Ottawa’s first COVID-19 Community Assessment Centre is open.
The new centre is located at the Brewer Arena: 151 Brewer Way.
It will be open daily from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m.

The health and wellbeing of Ontarians is our government’s top priority. Since we first learned of COVID-19 as an emerging public health issue, Ontario has been diligently monitoring the developing situation to protect the health and well-being of all Ontarians.

  • If you feel unwell (cough, fever, breathing difficulties), contact your health care provider, public health unit or Telehealth Ontario at 1-866-797-0000.
  • If you need emergency medical attention you should call 911 and mention your travel history and symptoms.
  • Visit Ontario’s website ( to learn more about how the province continues to protect Ontarians from COVID-19.

We are taking action to ensure readiness and respond to a range of outbreak scenarios:

  1. We are expanding our testing capacity and establishing dedicated assessment centres to ease pressures on hospitals.
  2. We have approved new physician billing codes for telephone assessments, enabling doctors to conduct more assessments over the phone rather than in their clinic.
  3. Ontario’s new Command Table has been refining and finalizing plans for the implementation of enhanced measures to ensure the province is prepared to response quickly and effectively to any scenario.

We will continue to work with partners at every level to ensure the health and safety of Ontarians remains our top priority.


Coronaviruses are spread mainly from person to person through close contact, for example, in a household, workplace or health care centre.

There are everyday actions that can help prevent the spread of germs that cause respiratory illnesses. Take these everyday steps to reduce exposure to the virus and protect your health:

  1. Wash your hands often with soap and water or alcohol-based hand sanitizer
  2. Sneeze and cough into your sleeve
  3. Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth
  4. Avoid contact with people who are sick
  5. Stay home if you are sick

We are working closely with Telehealth to ensure adequate support to handle increased call volumes and is committed to allocating additional resources as needed to ensure timely responses for Ontarians.

In addition to continuing to review virtual care capacity, including further expanding Telehealth and encouraging virtual care uptake, the Command Table has initiated early planning for the implementation of at-home testing, all of which will support caring for people at home.


Our government added three new types of leave to the Employment Standards Act: Sick Leave, Family Responsibility Leave and Bereavement Leave. Medical notes are not automatically required for these leaves of absence. Instead, employers now have the option to require reasonable proof of the circumstances that entitle the employee to leave.

We’re recommending that individuals who may feel ill stay at home, and we encourage employers to support that advice.


If you are travelling to an area known to have cases of coronavirus, be sure to avoid:

  • High-risk areas such as farms, live animal markets and areas where animals may be slaughtered
  • Contact with animals (alive or dead), including pigs, chickens, ducks and wild birds
  • Surfaces with animal droppings or secretions on them
  • Out of an abundance of caution, we are asking returning travellers to self monitor upon return for any symptoms that are consistent with covid-19.
  • If you feel unwell (cough, fever, breathing difficulties), contact your health care provider, public health unit or Telehealth Ontario at 1-866-797-0000.
  • As the situation develops, further guidance will be made available.
  • At this time, Dr. Williams has asked that Ontarians review the need for travel and minimize any and all non-essential travel.

The health and well-being of Ontarians is our government’s number one priority.

Given the latest developments both internationally and here at home, we are taking further action. Based on advice from Dr. David Williams, Ontario’s Chief Medical Officer of Health and the experts at the COVID-19 Command Table, the Minister of Education has issued a Ministerial Order to close all publicly funded schools in Ontario for two weeks following March break, in response to the emergence in Ontario of COVID-19.

This means that Ontario schools have been ordered to remain closed from March 14 through to April 5, 2020.

We recognize the significant impact this decision will have on families, students, schools, as well as the broader community, but this precaution is necessary to keep people safe. These steps build on a number of actions our government has taken in recent days to respond to COVID-19, including moving forward with additional public health measures, which include enhanced access to screening, expanding lab-testing capacity, and implementing new initiatives to keep the public and frontline workers safe.


We are aware of the suspension of classes and event at several post secondary institutions. We are staying in regular contact with all our Colleges and Universities to ensure they are equipped with the tools they need to make informed decisions. We have encouraged all institutions to work closely with public health authorities to ensure all COVID-19 protocols are aligned with their recommendations.

The health of students, faculty and staff is of the utmost importance to our government.

For specific information I recommend that you reach out directly to the institution directly or the appropriate district health unit.


Our government is providing stability to municipalities as they complete 2021 budget planning by committing to extending one-time mitigation funding for an additional calendar year for the province’s public health units. This action ensures that historical municipal adjustments remain capped at 10 per cent, and recognizes the considerable time and resources necessary for public health units to effectively respond to COVID-19. Extending mitigation funding would keep municipal funding levels for public health units in calendar year 2021 at the same level as calendar year 2020.

This is in addition to the up to $100 million COVID-19 Contingency Fund announced yesterday.


Our government wants to make sure health care providers have adequate personal protective equipment (PPE) supplies at the right time and in the right place to deal with increased demand. We have collected information from public health units, hospitals, emergency services, long-term care, home and community care and primary care teams to determine their specific needs.

We have reviewed the evidence-based guidance for PPE in order to address PPE supply and distribution, and system initiatives that will preserve our supply.

This update is consistent with the World Health Organization’s guidance for the rational and appropriate use of PPE in addressing COVID-19. It has been reviewed by the Registered Nurses’ Association of Ontario (RNAO) and leading infectious disease experts, who are supportive.

We have and will continue to engage with unions to ensure the continued health and safety of our health care workers and patients.


Our government has been working closely with our sector partners to monitor the levels of supplies in the system. It is important to note that the risk to Ontarians remains low. With that being said, it is important to note that those who are not exhibiting symptoms are not being tested.

In the coming days, we will also launch a new COVID-19 self-assessment tool on

This new tool will take the public through a series of questions to help inform those who are concerned about having contracted COVID-19 about how they can seek care based on their needs.

We ask that at this time people continue to monitor themselves and if you feel unwell (cough, fever, breathing difficulties), contact your health care provider, public health unit or Telehealth Ontario at 1-866-797-0000.


We continue to monitor the situation closely as we learn more about the impact COVID-19, geopolitical risks, and commodity price fluctuations will have on our economy. While it is still too early to know the full impacts, our government will ensure the necessary resources are available to respond as needed.


Out of an abundance of caution relating to the spread of COVID-19, the Legislature has given the government the tools to suspend future meetings of the assembly, if deemed necessary for public health reasons.

The steps the Legislature has taken give the government authority to provide notice that a future meeting of the Assembly should be cancelled – but currently the government intends to reconvene the Legislature on March 23rd.

The special provision, passed unanimously by the Legislature, is time-limited and expires June 4th.


The decision to close the Main Legislative Building for certain activities and functions is made by the Clerks and Speaker of the Assembly out of an abundance of caution. The government supports this temporary change and our first priority remains the health and safety of all Ontarians.

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Candice Coates, Executive Assistant
Office of Goldie Ghamari, MPP