Health Care

Ontario announces plan to contain COVID-19 variants

Ontario announces plan to contain COVID-19 variants”

Ontario will make all global travellers take a COVID-19 test on arrival at Toronto Pearson worldwide Airport starting Monday, February 1.

On Wednesday, sources told CP24 that Chief Medical Officer of Health Dr. David Williams was considering using his power under the Health Promotion and Protection Act to require all incoming visitors from overseas to submit to a COVID-19 test. Those who refuse will receive a $750 fine under the Health Protection and Promotion Act, the province said.

"That's a few weeks too long", said Premier Doug Ford in announcing the six-point plan at a news conference at Queen's Park.

Ontario Premier Doug Ford will announce mandatory coronavirus testing for all travellers arriving in Ontario from overseas, sources tell CP24.

A government source confirms to NEWSTALK 1010 that mandatory tests at Pearson will begin in a few days and eventually, at land border crossings as well.

Those with negative test results will be able to then isolate at home for the remainder of the 14 days, while those with positive tests will be immediately required to quarantine in designated government facilities.

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Ford said Friday that Ontario has confirmed 51 positive cases of the new variant of COVID-19 and, among them, five were identified through the government's pilot testing program at Pearson airport.

Mayor John Tory said he supports the actions taken today by the federal government and added that Toronto Public Health "has been clear that one of the ways to mitigate the variants is to stop the virus at the border and to protect the vulnerable".

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced stricter restrictions on travellers in response to new, likely more contagious variants of the novel coronavirus - including making it mandatory for travelers to quarantine in a hotel at their own expense when they arrive in Canada.

Ontario's first COVID-19 United Kingdom variant case was confirmed last month and was due to worldwide travel.

"Mandatory testing will serve as a stop-gap until the new federal measures take effect". Provincial labs will begin that initiative February 3, with the goal of screening all positive tests in the province.

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