COVID-19 on P.E.I.: What's happening Saturday, March 21

In her daily briefing on Saturday, P.E.I. chief public health officer Dr. Heather Morrison announced that new COVID-19 screening measures will be put in place at the Confederation Bridge, Charlottetown Airport and Souris ferry terminal.

She also said anyone entering P.E.I. from anywhere in the world, including other parts of Canada, should self isolate for 14 days. Exceptions will be made for individuals who are considered essential workers.

She said using law enforcement to implement the new measures has been discussed.

On Friday, she asked passengers on a flight from Toronto to Charlottetown on March 11 to self-isolate until March 25. P.E.I.'s second confirmed case of COVID-19 was on Air Canada flight 7564, which left Toronto at 9:20 a.m.

Morrison also clarified that children are required to socially distance as well. She said it is important for children to get outside, but warned to stay away from sports such as basketball, where items are touched by everyone. Morrison suggested ball hockey instead. Charlottetown closed its playgrounds Friday.

Schools, daycares and many businesses and services remain closed. Grocery stores are open, but on reduced hours.

In an early evening news conference, the province announced $2 million to support early learning centres, staff and parents.

Island Waste Management is moving to essential services: household pickup of compost, waste and recyclables, and disposal facilities open to businesses and institutions only, and only for compost and waste.

Today's top stories

Financial relief

  • The province's largest landlord, the P.E.I. Housing Corporation, will suspend evictions for six weeks. 
  • P.E.I.'s Minister of Education Brad Trivers announced licensed daycare staff will be eligible for employment insurance. Grants and subsidies will continue for licensed daycares. The province will provide emergency child-care services to essential workers who have no other options. 

Health

  • Health PEI said it will restrict all visitors to its facilities, except palliative care, intensive care, neonatal intensive care, obstetric and pediatric units. In these units, only one designated visitor is permitted — a member of the patient's immediate family or their care partner within the hospital.

  • Health PEI is rescheduling non-essential appointments, and said those affected will be contacted directly.

  • People who are ill or showing any symptoms of illness are being asked to call 811 and stay away from any P.E.I. health-care centres, unless they are seeking treatment. 

Schools, colleges and university

  • UPEI and Holland College have essential personnel only on campus.

Travel

  • Any Islanders who have travelled inside or outside Canada — whether experiencing symptoms or not — are recommended to self-isolate for 14 days following their return if they travelled after March 8.

The federal government announced last week there will be a ban on boats and cruise ships carrying more than 500 people from docking at Canadian ports until July.

COVID-19: What you need to know

What are the symptoms of COVID-19?

Common symptoms include:

  • Fever.
  • Cough.
  • Tiredness.

But more serious symptoms can develop, including difficulty breathing and pneumonia, which can lead to death.

What should I do if I feel sick?

Isolate yourself and call your local public health authority. Do not visit an emergency room or urgent care centre to get tested.

How can I protect myself?

  • Wash your hands frequently and thoroughly.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth.

More detailed information on the outbreak is available on the federal government's website.

More COVID-19 stories from CBC P.E.I.