OTTAWA -- Good morning. Here is the latest news on COVID-19 and its impact on Ottawa.

Fast Facts:

  • Ottawa Public Health reported its lowest daily case count in two months on Tuesday.
  • Ontario is getting ready for flu season amid the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
  • Businesses in upstate New York are getting ready for Canadians to return when the land border reopens.

COVID-19 by the numbers in Ottawa (Ottawa Public Health data):

  • New COVID-19 cases: Eight cases on Tuesday.
  • Total COVID-19 cases: 30,535
  • COVID-19 cases per 100,000 (previous seven days): 19.1
  • Positivity rate in Ottawa: 1.8 per cent (seven-day average)
  • Reproduction Number: 0.95 (seven-day average)

Testing:

Who should get a test?

Ottawa Public Health says you can get a COVID-19 test at an assessment centre, care clinic, or community testing site if any of the following apply to you:

  • You are showing COVID-19 symptoms;
  • You have been exposed to a confirmed case of the virus, as informed by Ottawa Public Health or exposure notification through the COVID Alert app;
  • You are a resident or work in a setting that has a COVID-19 outbreak, as identified and informed by Ottawa Public Health;
  • You are a resident, a worker or a visitor to long-term care, retirement homes, homeless shelters or other congregate settings (for example: group homes, community supported living, disability-specific communities or congregate settings, short-term rehab, hospices and other shelters);
  • You are a person who identifies as First Nations, Inuit or Métis;
  • You are a person travelling to work in a remote First Nations, Inuit or Métis community;
  • You received a preliminary positive result through rapid testing;
  • You are a patient and/or their 1 accompanying escort tra­velling out of country for medical treatment;
  • You are a farm worker;
  • You are an educator who cannot access pharmacy-testing; or
  • You are in a targeted testing group as outlined in guidance from the Chief Medical Officer of Health.

Long-term care staff, caregivers, volunteers and visitors who are fully immunized against COVID-19 are not required to present a negative COVID-19 test before entering or visiting a long-term care home.

Where to get tested for COVID-19 in Ottawa:

There are several sites for COVID-19 testing in Ottawa. To book an appointment, visit https://www.ottawapublichealth.ca/en/shared-content/assessment-centres.aspx

  • COVID-19 Assessment Centre at McNabb Arena at 180 Percy St.: Open Monday to Sunday from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m.
  • The Brewer Ottawa Hospital/CHEO Assessment Centre: Open Monday to Friday 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Saturday and Sunday 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. 
  • The Moodie Care and Testing Centre: Open Monday to Friday from 8 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. 
  • The Ray Friel Care and Testing Centre: Open Monday to Friday from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m.
  • North Grenville COVID-19 Assessment Centre (Kemptville) – 15 Campus Drive: Open Monday to Friday 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.
  • Centretown Community Health Centre: Open Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.
  • Sandy Hill Community Health Centre: Open Monday to Friday from 9 a.m. to 3 pm.
  • Somerset West Community Health Centre: Open from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday to Wednesday, 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. Thursday and 9 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. on Friday

COVID-19 screening tool:

The COVID-19 screening tool for schools in Ottawa and eastern Ontario. All students, teachers and school staff must complete the COVID-19 School screening tool daily.

Symptoms:

Classic Symptoms: fever, new or worsening cough, shortness of breath

Other symptoms: sore throat, difficulty swallowing, new loss of taste or smell, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, abdominal pain, pneumonia, new or unexplained runny nose or nasal congestion

Less common symptoms: unexplained fatigue, muscle aches, headache, delirium, chills, red/inflamed eyes, croup

Active COVID-19 cases in Ottawa drop with low daily case count

Ottawa Public Health is reporting eight more people in the city have tested positive for COVID-19, the lowest daily case count since August.

The seven-day average is 27.7, down from 35.4 last Tuesday and down from 62.2 last month.

To date, OPH has recorded 30,535 lab-confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the city since the pandemic began. No new deaths were reported on Tuesday. A total of 602 residents of Ottawa have died due to COVID-19.

The last time OPH reported a single digit case count in its daily snapshot was Aug. 9, when five new cases were added to the total.

The number of known active cases dropped on Tuesday amid higher numbers of resolved cases and hospitalizations due to COVID-19 remain low.

Daily case counts are typically lower on Tuesdays.

Public Health Ontario reported 20 new cases in Ottawa on Tuesday. Figures from OPH often differ from Public Health Ontario's because the two health agencies pull data for their respective daily snapshot reports at different times of the day. The province's total case count for Ottawa is slightly behind what OPH is reporting, at 30,522.

Across the province, health officials confirmed 328 new infections. Four more Ontarians have died due to COVID-19 and 498 existing cases are now considered resolved. 

 

Ontario orders 1.4 million extra doses of flu vaccine this year, shots available to everyone next month

Ontario’s health minister says the provincial government is spending nearly $90 million this year to purchase 7.6 million doses of the flu shot, an increase of more than a million doses over last year.

Speaking to reporters at a Toronto pharmacy on Tuesday morning, Deputy Premier and Health Minister Christine Elliott said the province is launching a larger flu shot campaign this season than last, purchasing 1.4 million more doses this year.

She noted that Ontario is prioritizing high-risk groups first but that the flu shot will be available to all Ontarians next month.

Canada’s chief public health officer Dr. Theresa Tam warned last week that while last year’s flu season was “virtually non-existent” in the country, Canadians should prepare for the possibility of a resurgence due to lower levels of immunity and the easing of public health restrictions.

Flu shot

New York State ready for Canadian travellers on Nov. 8 according to tourism council

Businesses in upstate New York are ready for Canadian travellers once the land border reopens on Nov. 8, according to the 1000 Islands International Tourism Council.

"Welcome back everybody very soon to the United States. It's exciting. For us, it's long overdue," said director of tourism for the council Corey Fram, over a Zoom call with CTV News Ottawa.

"Here in the 1000 Islands region, prohibiting people from crossing the border is really breaking up families, it's keeping people from being at their properties, it's keeping them from getting to their favourite restaurants and shops," Fram said. "For us, this loosening of the regulation, it's just another step towards normalcy in this whole world that we've all been in."

Fram said he expects to see a spike in southbound traffic that will last a couple of days, as Canadians with a vested interest head to the U.S.

"They may have family south of the border, they may have property that they need to see, and then after that it will taper off and numbers will be higher than what they were the year before," Fram said.

He noted that northbound passenger traffic across the Thousand Islands Bridge in Ivy Lea is up approximately 30 per cent month-to-month compared to 2020. The Canadian border opened up to American travellers in August.

The Ogdensburg-Prescott International Bridge