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What you need to know about COVID-19

UPDATE: October 9,Toronto, Peel, Ottawa and York regions are returning to modified Stage 2 of reopening restrictions for 28 days. Read the OMA’s recommendations for Ontario’s ongoing pandemic response.

News updates from the Ontario Medical Association

It’s a monster of a virus

It's a monster of a virus’: What these Ontario COVID-19 survivors want you to know about the virus — and how to make it through the second wave

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If exposed to COVID-19, how long should you wait before getting a test?

TORONTO -- Some parents have been flocking to COVID-19 testing centres, looking to rule out the possibility their children are carrying the infection after reports of exposures happening in schools across Canada.

While it seems like a responsible move, one expert says a negative result from being tested too soon in the virus’ incubation period may give people the false impression that they cannot spread the virus.

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Ontario surgery backlog due to COVID-19 could take 84 weeks to clear

TORONTO – A new study suggests it could take more than a year and a half to clear the backlog of surgeries in Ontario hospitals caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Modelling research published today in the Canadian Medical Association Journal says the estimated time to clear surgeries postponed due to the pandemic is 84 weeks, with a target of 717 surgeries per week.

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Back-to-school: Coronavirus 'Ask Me Anything' with Dr. Vinita Dubey

Toronto’s Associate Medical Officer of Health, Dr. Vinita Dubey, answered your back-to-school questions in connection with COVID-19 in a LIVE video interview on Monday, August 31, at 12:30 p.m. on Facebook.

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McMaster Children's Hospital - Back to School

Whether your child is learning from home, in the classroom, or a combination of both this school year, we support you in your decision. We recognize the challenges the COVID-19 pandemic has brought to families who are balancing school, work and many other responsibilities.

This website provides a series of videos on a variety of topics including infection prevention and control, child and youth mental health, and navigating the start of school for children with autism.

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Advice to Parents on Back to School with Public Health Physician

Back to school looks different this year due to the COVID-19 pandemic.  Listen as five Public Health physicians discuss what parents should consider as students return to class this fall.

Listen to the full podcast HERE 

Listen to each region's Public Health physician below:

Dr. Vinita Dubey from Toronto Public Health

Dr. Sarah Funnell from Ottawa Public Health

Dr. Alex Summers from Middlesex London Health Unit

Dr. Hamidah Meghani from Health Public Health

Dr. Marlene Spruyt from Algoma Public Health

Canada to release mask guidelines for children

The federal government will be releasing mask guidelines for children returning to school amid the novel coronavirus pandemic by the end of the week, chief public health officer Theresa Tam said.

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Opening of Indoor Bars in Ontario Potential Risk

TORONTO, JULY 17, 2020 – As some areas of the province move towards Stage 3 of reopening this Friday, the Ontario Medical Association (OMA) is calling on government to rethink opening indoor bars.

Reopening the economy is important for Ontarians’ financial, social and developmental needs. At the same time reopening is not an all or nothing situation.  A balanced approach that considers the risk of disease transmission in different settings is essential to ensure a successful reopening that keeps safety a top priority.

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OMA Spotlight on Health - Masking and COVID-19 with Dr. Samantha Hill

Wearing a mask is one of the key recommendations in the OMA’s public health pillars for a safe reopening. This episode features Dr. Samanatha Hill, OMA President and Cardiac Surgeon, explaining why you should wear a face mask or face covering whenever you are in public and physical distancing is difficult.

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OMA Podcast Episode 20: COVID-19 Contact Tracing with Dr. Chris Mackie

This episode focuses on the importance of contact tracing in stopping the spread of COVID-19 featuring Dr. Chris Mackie, the Medical Officer of Health and CEO for the Middlesex London Health Unit.

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The Golden Horseshoe and what regions can now reopen in Ontario

Parts of Ontario outside of the Golden Horseshoe are officially moving into Stage 2 of reopening with more and more businesses allowed to resume service.

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What's Trending - Caitlin speaks with Dr. Kassam

Toronto-area hospital mix-up resulted in almost 700 COVID-19 positive cases

Featuring Guest - Dr. Samantha Hill, president of the Ontario Medical Association, cardiac surgeon

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What You Need To Know - Staying Active during Covid-19

What's Trending - A Chat with Dr. Liao

What's Trending - Caitlin speaks with Dr. Liao

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Fourteen Days on the Covid Ward

I’m 32 years old and finished my medical residency two years ago. When the pandemic hit, I was put in charge of all infected non-ICU patients at Sunnybrook. What I learned will stay with me for the rest of my life.

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OMA Podcast Episode 18: Long-term care and COVID-19 with Dr. Naheed Dosani

This episode focuses on Long-term care and COVID-19, featuring Dr. Naheed Dosani, Palliative Care Physician and Medical Director, Region of Peel COVID-19 Homeless Response

Listen here

OMA Podcast Episode 17: Palliative care and COVID-19 with Dr. Naheed Dosani

This episode focuses on the importance of Palliative care and COVID-19, featuring Dr. Naheed Dosani, Palliative Care Physician and Medical Director, Region of Peel COVID-19 Homeless Response.

Listen here

OMA Podcast Episode 16: COVID-19 and Vulnerable populations with Dr. Naheed Dosani

This episode focuses on COVID-19 and disease spread in vulnerable populations, featuring Dr. Naheed Dosani, Palliative Care Physician and Medical Director, Region of Peel COVID-19 Homeless Response.

Listen here

How Family Physicians are Coping with COVID-19

Ontario's hospitals and long-term care homes are bearing the brunt of the most serious cases of COVID-19. Missed in this is how doctors and family health teams across the province are coping with patient health during a global pandemic. The Agenda looks at how doctors are handling their practices during this time.

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Ontario's Doctors post full page ad about virtual care and virtual appointments

The Ontario Medical Association has place a full page ad in the Toronto Star and Globe and Mail regarding virtual care and virtual appointments.

View or download the ad here.

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Palliative Care During a Pandemic

Many of Ontario's long-term care homes face devastation during the COVID-19 pandemic. One has lost almost half its residents to the virus. For very ill people end of life care becomes crucial. For their insights on the role palliative care can play, The Agenda welcomes Dr. Amit Arya, who specializes in long-term care and holds a joint faculty appointment in the Division of Palliative Care at McMaster University in Hamilton and the University of Toronto; and Dr. Naheed Dosani, founder and lead physician for Palliative Education and Care for the Homeless.

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Virtual Care Public Service Announcement

A Public Service Announcement (PSA) about Virtual Care

Listen to the COVID-19 Virtual Care PSA Radio Ad

View the COVID-19 Virtual Care PSA Print Ad

Taiwan's coronavirus protocol might be seen as 'extreme' to Canadians, but it works

Let’s face it, from the first appearance of COVID-19, Canada has been in a better position than our large neighbour to the south—better prepared, better resourced and better organized. But our cases and accompanying deaths are still rising exponentially, while citizens are still hunkered down in basement bunkers, and the economy is in a steep nosedive. 

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CBC goes inside Toronto hospital to show the fight against COVID-19

You've likely seen the videos on social media: exhausted doctors and nurses pleading with the public to stay inside, to limit the spread of COVID-19 and avoid overwhelming hospitals. 

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Hockey star Hayley Wickenheiser launches PPE drive in Toronto amid COVID-19 pandemic

Hayley Wickenheiser can't believe how quickly her drive for personal protection equipment has come together.

The Canadian hockey legend, Ontario premier Doug Ford and an army of volunteers joined forces at a storage facility in Toronto on Saturday to collect, organize and then distribute badly needed medical equipment to front-line workers during the COVID-19 pandemic.

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Dr. Lisa Salamon: Postpone preventative health screenings

Dr. Lisa Salamon: Understanding care priorities

I’m a healthy millennial. Getting COVID-19 was so much worse than I expected

The text came mid-morning as I was getting ready to start work from home on a Tuesday.

A friend had flu-like symptoms: dry cough, sore throat, muscle aches. She was sitting in a COVID-19 assessment centre waiting to be tested.

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Family doctors warn lack of face masks could force end to in-person visits

Family doctors are warning they’ll have to stop doing in-person examinations if they can’t get more face masks to protect themselves, staff and patients from potential transmission of COVID-19.

The shortage of protective equipment — also plaguing hospitals where masks are often rationed to two a day — could ironically put more pressure on emergency rooms at a time when they are preparing for a coronavirus surge.

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Should you shame friends into cancelling their vacations? (And 17 other urgent questions)

Should you attend religious gatherings? Should children visit their grandparents? Should you go to a restaurant? An infectious disease specialist weighs in.

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Coronavirus: Should I disinfect groceries before bringing them into the house?

As the novel coronavirus continues to sweep across the country, grocery shopping has become one of the most nerve-wracking — yet necessary — activities for Canadians.  With the worry of bringing COVID-19 into the home, many Canadians are asking - Should I disinfect groceries before bringing them into the house?

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New data: Middle-aged Canadians most likely to catch COVID-19, so far

A federal government breakdown of COVID-19 cases across Canada shows that middle-aged people are catching the disease in the highest numbers.

Children and teens are by far the least likely to catch it — or at least they are testing positive in the lowest numbers, which could also mean that fewer in this age group are being tested.

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That Discomfort You’re Feeling Is Grief

Some of the HBR edit staff met virtually the other day — a screen full of faces in a scene becoming more common everywhere. We talked about the content we’re commissioning in this harrowing time of a pandemic and how we can help people. But we also talked about how they were feeling.

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OMA Podcast Episode 15: Coronavirus Q&A with Dr. Frank Sommers

A special episode answering patient’s questions about mental health and COVID-19 featuring Dr. Frank Sommers, a Toronto psychiatrist.

Listen here

Recovering COVID-19 patient describes what it was like to have the virus

David Anzarouth knew it could happen to anyone but never thought it would happen to him.

The fit 25-year-old living in Toronto didn't worry about taking his vacation to South Beach in Miami, Fla., in early March.

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