Premier Stephen McNeil, chief medical officer of health Dr. Robert Strang, and Health and Wellness Minister Randy Delorey provided an update earlier today, March 18. A recording of the news conference is available on the NS Gov Youtube page: https://www.youtube.com/user/nsgov.
Details of additional measures announced to further prevent the spread of COVID-19 and increase capacity within the health system to respond are outlined below:
— doctors and pharmacists have new options for virtual care, using telephone and secure videoconferencing
— pharmacists can renew prescriptions for most medications and government will cover the assessment fee
— employers cannot require a doctor’s note if an employee must be off work
— College of Physicians and Surgeons waiving the fee for retired doctors to renew their licences so they can come back to work
— retired and other nurses are being brought into the system to assist with 811 staffing
— all service providers funded through the Department of Community Services’ Disability Support Program – including social enterprises, day programs, and supported employment programs for adults with diverse abilities – will close to participants and the public
Effective midnight, Thursday, March 19:
— personal service and fitness establishments such as hair salons, barber shops, spas, nail salons, body art establishments and gyms must shut down
The full news release is available at:https://novascotia.ca/news/release/?id=20200318004 and in French at: https://novascotia.ca/news/release/?id=20200318005.
NSHA and IWK have further restricted visitors and instituted other measures like online mental health supports and more assessment centres. More information is available at the links below:
A number of new resources have been developed for businesses and individuals, including:
- Prevent the spread of COVID-19 (printable poster) – https://novascotia.ca/coronavirus/COVID-19-Prevention-EN.pdf
- Information on how to self-isolate (fact sheet) – https://novascotia.ca/coronavirus/Self-Isolation-Information-for-Travellers-EN.pdf
- Information on social distancing (fact sheet) – https://novascotia.ca/coronavirus/Social-Distancing-EN.pdf
These materials are also available in French: https://novascotia.ca/coronavirus/fr/
As announced earlier today, Nova Scotia has 12 cases of COVID-19, including nine presumptive and three confirmed cases. The news release is available at: https://novascotia.ca/news/release/?id=20200318001 and in French athttps://novascotia.ca/news/release/?id=20200318002.