EOHU Region to Be in the “Orange-Restrict” Category of Provincial COVID-19 Response Framework as Stay-at-Home Order Ends
Return to Framework’s Public Health Measures on February 16th
On February 12th, 2021, the Ontario government announced that the Eastern Ontario Health Unit (EOHU) will be placed in the “Orange-Restrict” category of the province’s COVID-19 Response Framework starting on February 16th, 2021 at 12:01 a.m., when public health measures and restrictions indicated for Orange-Restrict in the framework will take effect.
The return to the framework comes as Ontario lifts the province-wide lockdown it put in place on December 26th, 2020 and the stay-at-home order it implemented on January 14th, 2021. The province’s decision today to place the EOHU region in the “Orange-Restrict” category is based on the latest local COVID-19 data for the region.
“I am glad to see the number of COVID-19 cases in our area is decreasing,” says Dr. Paul Roumeliotis, Medical Officer of Health at the EOHU. “However, as more sectors of the economy reopen, I am asking residents to remain vigilant and maintain public health measures as the pandemic is not over yet, and the COVID-19 variants could quickly derail the progress we have made so far.”
In order to keep your loved ones and the community safe from the original strain of COVID-19 and its more contagious variants, the EOHU is urging residents to continue following public health precautions such as masking, washing your hands regularly, physical distancing of 6 feet (2 metres) with individuals from outside your household and when out in public, limiting trips outside your home to essential errands only, and staying home if you aren’t feeling well.
The province has revised the COVID-19 Response Framework since it was developed in the fall. The changes the province has made to the Orange-Restrict level are aimed at the retail sector. In addition to the previous requirements:
- Stores must have passive screening for patrons (such as posting signs outside the store front asking individuals not to enter if they have COVID-19 symptoms). Malls must actively screen patrons prior to their entry.
- All stores and organizations must develop a COVID-19 workplace safety plan and make it available upon request.
Each public health unit is classified according to the framework indicators. Final decisions on the classification of public health unit regions are made by the government based on updated data and in consultation with the Chief Medical Officer of Health, local medical officers of health and other health experts.
For more information on the provincial COVID-19 Response Framework, and related public health measures in force for the EOHU region, visit www.EOHU.ca/covidlevel.