OTTAWA -- Flags at all municipal and federal sites in Ottawa will be flying at half-mast today to mark one year of the global pandemic and remember the people who lost their lives due to COVID-19.

The federal government has declared March 11, 2021 as a National Day of Observance to commemorate the people who lost their lives due to novel coronavirus and the significant impacts it's had on all Canadians.

The World Health Organization declared COVID-19 a global pandemic on March 11, 2020. The first case of COVID-19 was confirmed in Ottawa on March 11.

The first case in Ottawa was a man in his 40s who had travelled to Austria and experienced mild symptoms upon his return.

Since the first case in Ottawa one year ago, there have been 15,259 laboratory confirmed cases of COVID-19, including 446 deaths.

Speaking on Newstalk 580 CFRA's Ottawa at Work with Leslie Roberts on Wednesday, medical officer of health Dr. Vera Etches was asked about her level of worry after one year of novel coronavirus.

"I remain hopeful that the vaccination will make a difference because I can see what's happening now that our residents in long-term care homes are protected. We see that has been very significant, the declines in hospitalizations and deaths," said Dr. Etches.

"I want to see that extended to older adults in the community and beyond, this is good," said Etches.

"There is concern still because we know there's work that is required to keep the COVID levels manageable until we get there."

Dr. Etches will answer your questions during a special broadcast of CTV News at Six Thursday evening, marking one year of COVID-19 in Ottawa. Email your 15-second video question to