Anxious Canadians await federal COVID-19 help as cases rise, rules tighten

All Non Essential Businesses to Close in Ontario

The death toll now stands at 13 and the total number of confirmed cases at 688.

Premier Doug Ford has revealed that the Ontario government is expanding their state of emergency, and shutting down all non-essential services in a more intensive approach to curb the spread of COVID-19.

In total, there are 23 different countries listed under the travel-related cases, though officials sometimes use continental designations like "Asia" or "Europe", making it hard to fully ascertain the prevalence of COVID-19 in certain countries based on the data.

Ontario further tightened restrictions at long-term care facilities Tuesday, banning residents from leaving for off-site visits with friends and family.

The Registered Nurses' Association of Ontario also said in a news release Wednesday the province should buy enough ventilators for the worst-case scenario and sell any it doesn't end up using to other jurisdictions.

The province is reporting four new cases in the Halton Region.

"If there's more cases, it becomes just not possible to take care of everybody's well being enough to satisfy [a business] owner's conscience", John Rasenberg, president and founder of JMR Electric Ltd., an electrical and mechanical contractor based in Exeter, Ont., said in an interview.

"To all the snowbirds and the Canadians returning home from overseas, you must self-isolate". The others are listed as being in self-isolation or are "pending". Nineteen of the individuals are confirmed to have contracted the virus while on overseas travel to places like the U.K., Singapore, Italy, Dubai, Austria, Brazil and the US, while five were infected from close contact with existing cases. They are a 77-year-old Barrie, Ont. man, a 51-year-old Milton, Ont. man, a 77-year-old Toronto man, a woman in her 70s in York Region, a man in his 70s in Barrie, Ont., and a man in his 80s in Lindsay, Ont.

Eight cases have been resolved in the province.

Symptoms of the virus, which can include fever, cough and shortness of breath, are similar to other respiratory infections.

This marks the largest single-day jump since the coronavirus began to spread in Ontario - a record that was set only yesterday. "Do not call 911 unless it is an emergency".

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