OHT-N partners appealing for vigilance with personal preventive measures this holiday season

NORTHUMBERLAND COUNTY – Tuesday, December 15, 2020–With local cases of COVID-19 on the rise and the holiday season fast approaching, Ontario Health Team of Northumberland (OHT-N) partners are issuing an urgent appeal to local residents to remain vigilant with the preventive measures known to reduce spread.

2020 has been a challenging year, and we are all ready to welcome 2021 and put this virus behind us.

Vaccines are coming but our battle with COVID is far from over. It will be many months before the positive impact of broad scale vaccination can take hold. Prevention remains the greatest protection available to us and none of us can be successful alone – prevention is a shared responsibility.

Northumberland County residents, businesses and organizations have worked extremely hard, and made unprecedented sacrifices, to prevent the spread of COVID-19. But the virus is strong, and it is on the rise. Only a few short months ago the number of confirmed positive COVID-19 cases in Northumberland was low. Suddenly, that situation has shifted. Many areas around Northumberland County have also experienced increases and confirmed cases of COVID-19 are also rising across Ontario and around the globe. Without a doubt, now is not the time to ease up on our commitment to personal protective measures. To that end, as we head into the holiday season, OHT-N partners are calling on everyone to continue to follow public health advice to limit the potential for spread of COVID-19 in our County. Specifically:

  1. Maintain physical distancing: Don’t give the virus a chance to spread. Keep a minimum distance of two metres (six feet) from other people outside of your immediate household.
  2. Wear a mask: Ontario requires masks or face coverings to be worn in all public indoor settings, including business, facilities and workplaces, with very few exceptions (e.g. children under the age of 2).
  3. Practice good hand hygiene: Clean your hands frequently and thoroughly with soap and water or use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer. Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth unless you have just washed your hands.
  4. Stay home if you are ill.

The best gift we can all give this holiday season is distance. Please—heed public health officials’ directions to avoid non-essential travel. Avoid holiday parties, large family dinners and similar indoor activities. Celebrate in-person only with those in your immediate household, and share your greetings with others from afar or—if available to you—by taking advantage of the many virtual options available. If you live alone, consider celebrating with one other household only—or connect with others virtually.

We know that this is going to be difficult, but the consequences if we do not follow this advice will be much worse. We must do everything in our power to protect our whole community, together.

Trish Baird, Chief Executive Officer, Community Care Northumberland
Carol Beauchamp, Executive Director, Rebound Child and Youth Services
Adrienne Bell-Smith, Executive Director, Northumberland Family Health Team
Linda Davis, President and CEO, Northumberland Hills Hospital
Delayne Donald, Executive Director, Trent Hills Family Health Team
Varouj Eskedjian, President and CEO, Campbellford Memorial Hospital
Kaye Jackson, caregiver representative
Kerri-Anne Kidd, Executive Director, The Bridge Hospice
Scott MacPherson, patient representative
Jennifer Moore, Chief Administrative Officer, Northumberland County
Wendy Parker, Executive Director, Lakeview Family Health Team
Taryn Rennicks, Executive Director, Community Health Centres of Northumberland
Nora Sawyer, Interim Manager, Alderville First Nation Health and Social Services

Looking for information on COVID-19?
For the most up-to-date provincial information on COVID-19, including symptoms, visit Ontario’s dedicated COVID-19 website. For local updates, visit the HKPR District Health Unit website. For information on where to obtain a COVID-19 test, see the OHT-N website.