The local health unit is checking to see if it’s prepared in case it decides to increase its response level to COVID-19.

Currently, the North Bay Parry Sound District Health Unit is listed at the Green level and any change to this will be communicated to the public.

Using the indicators and thresholds in the province’s COVID-19 Response Framework, the Ministry of Health adjusts the response level for Health Units. 

When there is a change in the trend, up or down, they communicate with the local Medical Officer of Health, and a collective decision is made regarding the appropriate level. 

Local Medical Officers of Health can request the Ministry of Health to increase the response level for their district based on the local situation, and can also add their own restrictions or requirements within their district.

“The Health Unit has seen a rise in cases since mid-October in our district” Medical Officer of Health, Dr. Jim Chirico said. “We must act now to prevent further spread of COVID-19, and help protect our vulnerable populations, preserve our vital hospital resources and prevent lockdowns.”

The restrictions imposed by the province represent the minimum measures required in the district. 

They decrease but do not prevent the spread of COVID-19. 

That is why the Health Unit urges everyone to:

  • Avoid socializing for now.
  • Limit travel outside the home to attending school or work – if unable to work from home. Essential trips for groceries, medication and medical appointments.
  • Assume everyone has COVID-19 outside your home and take precautions.
  • Keep a distance of two (2) metres between yourself and anyone outside of your home. However, if you live alone, you may consider having close contact with another household.
  • Wear a face covering if you need to be closer than two (2) metres from someone outside your home during essential trips. Being in close contact to someone has the highest risk of transmitting COVID-19, along with being in closed or crowded spaces.
  • Wash or sanitize your hands often, cough or sneeze into your sleeve and if you feel unwell stay home and arrange to be tested.
  • Limit exercise and recreation to outdoor spaces where physical distancing is possible.
  • Avoid travel outside of our district, especially to areas with high numbers of COVID-19 cases, unless for emergencies or urgent medical appointments.

For more information on COVID-19 head here or call the Health Unit’s call centre at 1-800-563-2808.