Kanata North COVID-19 Update October 15

This has been a challenging weekOttawa is now in the Red Zone, meaning that the number of individuals testing positive for COVID-19 and outbreaks occurring throughout the city is rapidly growing. In the past 20 days, the number of hospitalizations has doubled. If we follow this trajectory, the number of COVID-19 cases will exponentially grow. This should be a wakeup call. We must take action to slow the spread of the virus by being COVIDWise. 

Last Friday, Premier Ford announced that Ottawa would be reverting into a modified stage 2, due to the rising COVID-19 case numbers. I know this is challenging for many and will impact business owners who were already struggling. I have heard from many of you regarding your frustration with these changesWhile this decision is overwhelming, I know that we will be able to get through this together. We have done this before, and we have no choice but to do it again. 

Please reach out to loved ones, support local businesses if your able, and be COVIDWise. 

COVID-19 Dashboard 
Every day, Ottawa Public Health (OPH) publishes a dashboard that is updated with the latest information. You can view it on this website. It includes many metrics. In addition to case counts, here is just a sample of the metrics I monitor closely: 

  • Case Numbers 
    • This metric is the number of confirmed positive cases in our city that have been identified through testing. This metric is important to the overall picture of COVID-19 in our community. However, it’s important to know that testing can only capture a sample of the true infection rates in our community. Over the last week, we saw 647 new confirmed positive cases: 
      • Friday + 126 
      • Saturday + 94 
      • Sunday + 54 
      • Monday + 119 
      • Tuesday + 116 
      • Wednesday + 45 
      • Thursday + 93 
    • Sadly, there were 2 deaths this week. This brings the cumulative total to 5,800 individuals with COVID-19 infections and tragically 298 residents of our city who have died. 
  • Hospitalizations   
    • This is an important metric to understand the capacity and demand that hospitals are facing. We continue to see a growing number of individuals being hospitalizedCurrently, there are 46 individuals in hospital and 9 people in the intensive care unit (ICU). There has been a cumulative total of 373 individuals hospitalized and 85 people admitted into the ICU since the beginning of the pandemic.    
  • Outbreaks   
    • Currently, in Ottawa, there are 75 ongoing outbreaks. This is crucially important information as these are very high-risk locations. These include areas like long-term care homes, retirement homes, hospitals, schools, and childcare centres. COVID-19 can spread quickly in these high-risk locations and it is important we do everything we can to minimize the spread in these areas. This includes a new outbreak at the Forest Hill Long-Term Care Home in Kanata. 
  • Health Care System Capacity  
    • The more COVID-19 cases we have in our city, the more hospitalizations we might have, which can lead to a reduction in capacity in our health care system. This is especially important as we approach flu season. The Health Care System Capacity section shows the amount of health care systems that are being occupied. Currently, 16% of the ICU ventilator beds are in use.   
  • Public Health   
    • It’s very important that OPH’s case workers can reach individuals confirmed with COVID-19 within 24 hours of being reported to them. The goal is to do this 90% of the time and currently they are not meeting this at 27%, due to the high number of cases and number of individuals getting tested. Additionally, it’s also important that contacts of those cases are reached within 24 hours and this is being done 89% of the time. If the number of individuals infected with COVID-19 continues to increase, the amount of resources available to OPH will not be sufficient to continue contact tracing.  
  • Number of Contacts Per Infected Cases  
    • Currently, the average is 3, a decrease from last week. This is the average number of people that have been in contact with an individual who has tested positive for the virus. This number is of importance because the higher the number, the more opportunities the virus has to spread in our community. The lower the number, the easier it is to identify close contacts and mitigate further spread of the virus. The most effective way you can have a positive impact on this metric is by following the guidance of OPH and maintaining physical distancing whenever possible, washing your hands, and wearing a mask.   

City Updates 

  • OPH will be holding Flu Clinics at several locations across the city that are expected to open on October 29. The closest one for our community is in Kanata South at the Eva James Memorial Centre at 65 Stonehaven Drive. To avoid crowding, residents must make an appointment by phone or online. OPH flu clinic locations are now posted on the OPH Influenza (Flu) webpage. As a reminder, you can also get your flu shot at select pharmacies and doctors offices. 
  • Yesterday, Dr. Vera Etches provided City Council with a snapshot of our city’s current COVID-19 status. She shared that Ottawa is now in the Red Zone, meaning that there is a rapid increase of spread and outbreaks, along with limited hospital capacity. Last week alone, over 700 Ottawa residents tested positive. This is the highest rate of infections per population in the Province in the last two weeks. Dr. Etches also informed us that the percentage of people testing positive has grown to over 2.5%. This is worrisome for our community and we must take immediate action. 
  • Dr. Vera Etches also provided new COVID-19 modeling that shows our city’s trajectory if transmission continues at the current rate. The graph below shows that the number of individuals testing positive with COVID-19 will grow exponentially.  

  • I know the announcement regarding the new closures are hard to understand. While the city does not make these decisions, OPH provided this graphic that shows areas with high risk of exposure.  


  • It is important to remember the goals for the COVID-19 response, which are to: 
    • Minimize deaths and hospitalizations. 
    • Minimize societal disruptions: 
      • Keep schools open. 
      • Mitigate the economic impact. 
      • Promote positive mental health. 
  • CHEO researchers have shared ground-breaking data that measures COVID-19 levels within our city’s wastewater. Dr. Vera Etches shared that there are alarming levels within the city’s wastewater indicating that we are getting hit by the second wave of COVID-19 harder than we thought. This is important data as it shows results from almost everyone in the city, without lag time. It provides us with a bigger picture of what is happening within our community and infections not being picked up by testing. 
  • Yesterday, Dr. Vera Etches clearly stated that she does not recommend Trick or Treating on Halloween. Ottawa has the highest number of positive cases per 100,000 residents within the Province and must act responsibly. Not engaging in tasks that are not essential is mandatory to keep the risk of exposure lowI encourage you to make new plans that are safe and fun! Share your ideas using the hashtag #HalloweenAtHome. 
  • Recognizing that there was confusion regarding the Provincial modified stage-two restrictions, the city has provided clarification on city run recreation activities and rentals: 
    • Masks must be worn in all facilities. 
    • Fitness and weight rooms are closed. 
    • Instructional recreation programs have been cancelled, except for modified swimming lessons.  
    • Do not travel outside red zone for fitness or sports. This includes our outlying neighbouring sports facilities in Beckwith, Carleton Place, etc. 
    • Meeting and event rentals are limited to 10 people inside, 25 people outside. 
    • Arenas limited to 10 participants, changerooms closed: Only 10 participants are permitted at an arena for team practices, including coaches. In addition, no spectators, and the use of dressing rooms are restricted for storage and first-aid use only. 
    • Swimming activities continue: Public and lane swimming, as well as swimming lessons, can continue under the recent regulations, but with limited numbers. Change rooms will remain open for showering and changing. Reservations will continue online and can be made up to two days in advance. Masks need to be worn throughout the facility and on the pool deck but can be removed when entering the water. 
    • Racquet Sports: Racquet sports where the participants are on opposite sides of a court, like tennis, pickle ball and badminton, are restricted to single play only. Conversely, racquetball and squash will not be allowed, as both involve two players playing in close proximity in an enclosed room. Outdoor basketball courts, ball diamonds, pitches and football fields remain available for training and practice only and with a maximum attendance of 25 people. 
    • The only exception to the above is for indoor religious ceremonies or services where the number of participants will be based on 30 per cent of the room capacity and participants maintaining a two-metre distance from each other. For both indoor and outdoor events, table sittings must be limited to no more than six people.  

Lastly, I want to once again encourage everyone to get the COVID Alert app. The app alerts users if they have been exposed to the virus before symptoms occur. The app is free, easy to use, and acts as a great tool to stop the spread of COVID-19. 

Stay safe. Be COVIDWise. 

Take care, 

Jenna Sudds