Mark Clairmont | MuskokaTODAY.com

SIMCOE-MUSKOKA — As vaccine news dominates the day regional cases neared 100 today — with four more in Muskoka.

Simcoe Muskoka District Health Unit reports 95 cases early this afternoon — while the province counted one more.

The four Muskoka cases were in Bracebridge and Huntsville:

1.       Bracebridge female, 0-17, under investigation, reported April 22, first episode April 21

2.       Bracebridge female, 0-17, under investigation, reported April 22, first episode April 21

3.       Bracebridge man, 45-64, community acquired, reported April 22, first episode April 21

4.       Huntsville man, 45-64, under investigation, reported April 21, first episode April 19

The health unit says that brings local cases to 430 since Sunday.

But provincial figures show 581: Sunday 101, Monday 114, Tuesday 77, Wednesday 124, Thursday 69, Friday 96.

Ontario jumped again to 4,505 and 34 deaths — from 3,682 cases yesterday a hike of 823.

Toronto, too, was up to 1,247 from 1,121 an increase of 126.

York fell two dozen to 412.

But the biggest jump alone was Peel, which went from 507 Thursday to 1,232 today — 725 more cases.

North Bay-Parry Sound had no cases after reporting 3 the day before.

This as Canada’s vaccine advisory group says this afternoon that the AstraZeneca is relatively safe depending on your health condition for those aged 30 and older; even as Ontario reports its first clot case in a man in his 60s who got the vaccine.

The National Advisory Committee on Immunization (NACI) had recently put its use on pause pending a review of rare blood clots.

New federal modelling this morning optimistically offers hope for a mid- to late-summer lifting of restrictions as tougher lockdown restrictions are working.

However, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau — who got his AstraZeneca shot today along with his wife Sophie Grégoire — said in his noon briefing that Canada has secured enough vaccine supply from Pfizer to take the country through to 2024.

So it seems the pandemic hangover may linger for many more years to come — if not longer. Canada could cut its greenhouse gas emissions by nearly half before then.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau holds his wife Sophie Grégoire’s hand as they got the AstraZeneca vaccine today.

$60,000 for Pines HVAC resident comforts

Meanwhile, Parry Sound-Muskoka MPP Norman Miller announced $60,000 in one-time federal-provincial funding to make upgrades to the Pines long-term care home in Bracebridge.

The funding is part of a $100 million investment to install heating, ventilation and air-conditioning (HVAC) systems, and make retrofits or repairs to fire sprinkler systems, in 95 long-term care homes across the province.

“This investment will benefit many of the most vulnerable people in our community, providing them with the comfortable and safe living spaces they deserve,” said Miller.

Specifically this funding will upgrade an existing AC freon unit and install evaporator, valves, solenoids, refrigerant lines, and a condensing unit at the Pines.


  • 9,824 confirmed cases
  • 430 cases this week; 712 last week, 7% higher than the 665 cases reported for the week of April 4.
  • 16 deaths in April, 12 in March
  • 2,166 UK (B.1.1.7) variants, 29 from Brazil (P.1), 2 from South Africa (B.1.351)
  • 544 cases awaiting VOC confirmation
  • 175,700+ total vaccine administered in Simcoe Muskoka, including at pharmacies
  • 159,800 people living in Simcoe Muskoka have received their first dose of vaccine, which is about 25% of the population.
Updated figures this afternoon show 106 new cases today and one more death in Simcoe.


  • Canada’s last flights from India landed today. They are grounded along with those from Pakistan the next 30 days as of Saturday. The restriction applies to private and commercial planes, but not emergency and aid flights.
  • New Brunswick says come — just not now. It says now effective Saturday all non-essential travellers entering the province will have to be isolate for the first 7 days of their 14-day isolation at their own cost ($200 per day) at a government-sanctioned hotel — even if they’ve had a vaccine or positive COVID test. It will last until late May.
  • Alberta reports 1,857 cases, Manitoba 181 and 2 deaths.

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