There is so much information available on the internet and in the media on COVID-19 that we wanted to answer the questions that we receive from our Clients and Caregivers most frequently.
Q: WHAT IS COVID-19?
COVID-19 (Novel Coronavirus) is a respiratory infection which can range from mild to severe. In many cases of people who have been infected with COVID-19 they may have little to no symptoms. Symptoms may take up to 14 days to appear after exposure to COVID-19. This is the longest known incubation period for this disease. It is important to note that you may not know you have symptoms of COVID-19 because they are similar to a cold or flu.
Some common reported symptoms include;
- new or worsening cough
- difficulty breathing
- pneumonia in both lungs
Q: HOW CAN I PROTECT MYSELF AND OTHERS?
In an effort to reduce the spread of COVID-19 within the community everyone is advised to:
- Thoroughly wash your hands with soap and water often
- Wipe and sanitize your everyday high usage items
- Ensure you are sneezing and coughing into your sleeve
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth
- Avoid contact with people who are sick
- Stay home as much as possible and self isolate if you are over the age of 70 or have a compromised immune system
- Practice physical distancing, 2 meters (6 feet) is best, when you have to go out
- Do not gather in groups
- Go outside to exercise but stay close to home
Q: WHAT IS PHYSICAL DISTANCING?
With the COVID-19 pandemic came a whole new way to interact when out in public. Physical distancing means keeping a distance of at least 6 feet (2 metres) from others at all times when out in public spaces. This excludes people that live with you in your home. Physical distancing has proven to slow the spread of diseases in many pandemic situations and is to help protect not only your health and well-being but the safety of others. For more information refer to the Government of Canada Fact sheet on Physical Distancing.
Q: I THINK I MAY HAVE BEEN EXPOSED OR HAVE SYMPTOMS OF COVID-19, WHAT DO I DO?
If you experience any symptoms or think you may have been exposed to COVID-19:
- Complete the COVID-19 Self Assessment provided by the Ministry of Health
- Call Telehealth Ontario Toll-free: 1-866-797-0000 or Toll-free TTY: 1-866-797-0007
- Call your primary care provider; or
- Contact your local public health unit
if it is a medical emergency call 911 immediately
Q: WHAT INFECTION PREVENTION AND CONTROL PRECAUTIONS HAVE YOU PUT IN PLACE TO ENSURE MY HEALTH AND WELL-BEING?
We are monitoring the situation surrounding COVID-19 very closely and to ensure that you, our Clients, Residents, and families, all remain safe we have a dedicated Emergency Management Team working to monitor the situation and ensuring our readiness. We are still providing essential services in the community and prior to each visit we will actively screen you and other people living in the home. Our employees will ask our current screening questions about possible exposure to COVID-19 prior to starting service (often the day before the visit) and at each and every visit.
As well, we are also screening all our front line employees at the start and end of each and every shift.
Our current screener includes the following questions:
- Do you or anyone you live with have a fever (>37.8 degrees)?
- Do you or anyone you live with have any of the following new or worsening symptoms/signs?
- new or worsening cough
- shortness of breath
- difficulty breathing
- sore throat
- decrease/loss of sense of taste or smell
- runny nose/nasal congestion without other known cause
- difficulty swallowing
- diarrhea/abdominal pain/nausea/vomiting
- unexplained fatigue/malaise/muscle aches
- pink eye (conjunctivitis)
- Have you or anyone you live with travelled outside on Ontario in the last 14 days?
- Have you or anyone you live with had close contact with anyone with acute respiratory Illness or a confirmed probable case of COVID-19?
- If you are over age 70 are you experiencing any of the following:
- Unexplained or increased number of falls
- Acute functional decline
- Worsening of chronic conditions
Q: THE SERVICE/PROGRAM THAT I NORMALLY ACCESS HAS BEEN TEMPORARILY PLACED ON HOLD, WILL THERE BE MORE CLOSURES?
As new information becomes available, we may need to make the difficult decision to cancel some of our services in an effort to keep all Clients, Residents and staff safe and healthy. We will keep you informed and let you know of any changes should they arise. Please contact your Service Coordinator if you have any questions related to this information or require any additional supports.
Q: HOW CAN YOU SUPPORT ME WHILE I STAY AT HOME?
We continue to provide essential services to our Clients during this time and will continue to evaluate our program offerings in alignment with the province’s reopening framework. Check out our Temporary Closures and Program Changes page for updates on our current service offerings.
Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 416-447-7244 ext. 541 if you require any essential services or any support.