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Coronavirus Updates: Waterloo reports two more cases of COVID-19

The latest coronavirus news from Canada and around the world on Thursday:

11 am .: Waterloo has two more COVID-19 cases, reports Anam Latif of the Waterloo Region Record. The first is a 60-year-old woman returning from a Caribbean cruise, the second is a 40-year-old man who has returned from Las Vegas. It is the third confirmed case for Waterloo Region.

10:40: The Philippine president suspended domestic travel to and from the Manila area for a month and authorized sweeping quarantines in the region to combat the new coronavirus.

President Rodrigo Duterte also banned large rallies in the metropolis, suspended most of the government’s work and extended the suspension of classes by one month with new restrictions announced Thursday in a national television address.

10:07: NHL advises clubs to give up roller skates and morning practices.

The league is also advising against team meetings, citing what it calls “uncertainty about next steps” related to COVID-19.

The NHL says it plans to make an announcement about the future of the season later today.

10:05: The Raptors announce that players, coaches and crew members isolate themselves for 14 days. The Toronto Raptors played Utah Jazz in Salt Lake City on Monday evening. On Wednesday evening, tests revealed that a jazz musician, Rudy Gobert reportedly, tested positive for the COVID-19 virus.

They are also asking fans who came in contact with someone from the organization this week to be more vigilant about signs of coronavirus. Team members have made two public appearances since returning from Toronto to Utah.

21:49: The TMX group says market switches have been triggered to pause negotiations on the Toronto Stock Exchange, TSX Venture Exchange and TSX Alpha.

The break came after the S & P / TSX composite index dropped more than 1,000 points at the start of trading.

The S&P 500 fell approximately 7% within the first few minutes of Thursday’s trading, steep enough to trigger an automatic stop to trading on the New York Stock Exchange. The index is slated to join the Dow as it enters a bear market after losing more than 20% of its record last month and one of the greatest eras in Wall Street history is crumbling.

9:35: Ontario says the first wave of dedicated province assessment centers for COVID-19 will open in the coming days.

The facilities will be at Brampton Civic Hospital, Ottawa Hospital, North York General Hospital, Mackenzie Health, Scarborough Health Network and Trillium Health Partners.

Other plants will open across the province in the coming weeks and will be separate spaces to protect patients in the rest of the hospital.

The province has also approved new billing codes for medical evaluations by phone and is launching a provincial-level public education campaign with announcements on social media, search engines, radio and the press.

8:42: The city of Toronto has announced that it has entered the next phase of its ongoing management of COVID-19, with the implementation of a task force across the city.

In a press release, it is stated that the Emergency Operations Center is in the process of activating Level 1, which implies monitoring the situation here and around the world. Coordinate internal efforts at the City to ensure that it meets the needs of residents and businesses if the activation level changes.

In the statement, he says that the COVID-19 task force includes key executives from all divisions and agencies of the City and are now located at the center, planning various responses, including:

  • the potential for an increase in staff absenteeism due to illness and the impact on the city’s ability to provide basic services

  • global supply chain challenges for personal protective equipment, such as masks and gloves for frontline workers and first responders
  • actions taken to protect vulnerable populations, such as those who live homeless or in long-term care homes run by the city
  • develop, share and continuously update critical information for city residents and visitors
  • predict and respond to the economic impacts that the pandemic can have on residents and businesses.

8:25: A spokesman for New Brunswick premier Blaine Higgs says he will not participate in the prime ministers meeting today in Ottawa, now that his province has reported its first presumptive case of COVID-19.

Spokeswoman Nicolle Carlin said this morning that Higgs had decided to stay in New Brunswick.

On Wednesday, Higgs said the Ottawa meeting should be held by teleconference, noting that there is a travel ban for New Brunswick government employees due to the pandemic.

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Dr Jennifer Russell, medical director of New Brunswick, says health officials learned on Wednesday that a 50 to 60 year old woman living in the southeastern part of the province was “minimally symptomatic” after returning from a trip to France.

New Brunswick is the first Atlantic province to report a presumptive case of the disease.

8:21: Dow Jones futures fell more than 1,000 points as U.S. stock markets prepare for further losses Thursday after President Donald Trump’s speech on the coronavirus epidemic appears to have failed to ease investor concerns.

Dow Jones industrial average futures were showing a 5% drop, or 1,194 points. Futures for the S&P 500 decreased by 5%, or approximately 138 points.

On Wednesday, the Dow lost 1,464 points, dragging it 20% below the record set last month and putting the index in a bear market. If the S&P 500 closed more than 1%, this would put the index in the territory of the bear market and end the longest bull market in the history of the United States.

Foreign markets suffered heavy losses. Most equity markets in Asia have fallen by more than 3% and markets in Europe are down 6% or more.

8:06: Inmates in the Saskatoon Correctional Center are quarantined after an offender claimed to have previously been in contact with someone with COVID-19.

The infection protocol was done as a precautionary measure. Alberta and BC Officials confirmed they had not identified the person identified by the offender as infected, said Noel Busse, director of communications for the Ministry of Justice / Corrections and Saskatchewan Police on 11 March.

“Until we completely rule out any potential contact between this individual and COVID-19, we are taking precautionary infection control measures in our corrective facilities if necessary.”

Seven inmates were transported with the original offender. Six out of 13 living areas are quarantined in the Saskatoon Correctional Center. Quarantine affects 158 offenders.

7:33: Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte was tested for the new coronavirus on Thursday after meeting with government officials who had been exposed to infected people and who have now been self-quarantined, an official said.

Duterte has no symptoms of COVID-19 but wanted to make sure he was healthy and could continue interacting with the public, said Senator Christopher Lawrence “Bong” Go, a former presidential assistant who still accompanies Duterte to official functions.

“Considering that some members of the Cabinet we engage with regularly have been exposed to people who have been tested positively for COVID-19 … it is only prudent for us to take precautionary measures in accordance with the advice of our health officials,” he said Go.

7:28: Iran said Thursday that it had requested an emergency loan of $ 5 billion from the IMF to help fight the spread of a new virus that has hit the country, infecting more than 10,000 people and killing hundreds.

Iranian Ministry of Health spokesman Kianoush Jahanpour announced in a now daily press conference that 75 people had died in the past 24 hours and that more than 1,000 new cases of infection had been confirmed, bringing the death toll to 429 and confirmed cases at 10.075.

In a tweet on Thursday, Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif urged the IMF to “stay on the right side of history and act responsibly” by releasing funds through the international lender’s swift financial instrument. Iranian central bank chief Abdolnasser Hemmati said Thursday that he made the $ 5 billion request last week in a letter to IMF chief Kristalina Georgieva. The IMF has said it is ready to support countries fighting the virus.

7:05: On Thursday, the European Union came out against President Donald Trump’s “one-sided” decision to limit travel from Europe to the United States via the coronavirus, stating that the disease does not respect borders.

Trump announced that all travel to Europe would be interrupted, but US officials later clarified that the restrictions would only apply to most foreign nationals who had been in the travel area without a European passport at any time for 14 days. before they arrived in the United States.

“The European Union disapproves of the fact that the United States’ decision to impose a travel ban has been taken unilaterally and without consultation,” said EU Council President Charles Michel and Commission President Ursula von der Leyen in a joint declaration.

“Coronavirus is a global crisis, not limited to any continent and requires cooperation rather than unilateral action,” said the two.

5:16: A spike in cases in the Arab Gulf states helped push infections in the Middle East for the new coronavirus of more than 10,000 cases on Thursday, with most people infected in Iran or having recently traveled there.

Iran has applied for an emergency loan of $ 5 billion from the International Monetary Fund to combat the outbreak there, which has killed more than 360 people and infected around 9,000 people in the Islamic Republic. Iranian central bank chief Abdolnasser Hemmati said Thursday that he made the request last week in a letter to IMF chief Kristalina Georgieva. The international financier said he was ready to support countries through a quick financial instrument.

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