Dear Ukrainian-Canadian friends, we are happy to provide you with a comprehensive summary of the COVID-19 crisis in Canada that is available online. We all facing difficulties these days and it's our hope that the information below will help with some of your concerns. Last update: March 23, 2020.
Canadians Currently Outside of Canada
Global Affairs Canada (GAC) has advised that in an effort to limit the spread of COVID-19, many countries have established travel or border restrictions and other measures, such as movement restrictions and quarantines. Airlines have cancelled flights. New restrictions may be imposed with little warning. Your travel plans may be severely disrupted and you may be forced to remain outside of Canada longer than expected. GAC advises to contact your airline or tour operator to determine options for cancelling or postponing your trip.
If you are still considering travelling or are already outside of Canada:
Check your destination’s Safety and security, Entry/exit requirements and Health sections.
You may receive the Government of Canada’s latest updates on COVID-19 at https://www.canada.ca/en/public-health/services/diseases/2019-novel-coronavirus-infection.html
Please check the Pandemic COVID-19 travel health notice at https://travel.gc.ca/travelling/travel-health-notices/221
It is important for all travellers to:
Self-isolate for 14 days after your return from travel outside of Canada (some provinces and territories may have specific recommendations for certain groups);
Monitor your health for fever, cough or difficulty breathing;
Wash your hands often for 20 seconds and cover your mouth and nose with your arm when coughing or sneezing.
The following is the information from Global Affairs received on March 17:
• To all Canadians experiencing difficult times abroad, Global Affairs is with you and is doing everything possible to help. Global Affairs is now dealing with an historic and unprecedented situation.
• Global Affairs recommends that Canadians abroad return to Canada by commercial means while they are still available.
• However, some countries have put measures in place such as closing land borders and in some cases shutting down their airspace.
• In some cases, such measures can go as far as the complete cancellation of flights for an indeterminate period of time.
• Such measures might prevent some Canadians from leaving the country in which they are located.
• If this is the case, Global Affairs strongly recommends that you follow the advice of local authorities for your health and safety.
Loan Program to assist Canadians abroad
Global Affairs has also set up a loan program of up to $5,000 per person to assist Canadians who need to either book an emergency flight or extend their stay abroad.
Canadians can apply for this loan at https://travel.gc.ca/assistance/emergency-info/financial-assistance/covid-19-financial-help
How to Apply:
Eligible Canadians currently outside Canada who need financial assistance can contact the nearest Government of Canada office or Global Affairs Canada’s 24/7 Emergency Watch and Response Centre in Ottawa at +1 613-996-8885 (call collect where available) or CAN.finances.CV19@international.gc.ca.
For all other consular emergencies, contact the nearest Government of Canada office or Global Affairs Canada’s 24/7 Emergency Watch and Response Centre in Ottawa at +1 613-996-8885 (call collect where available) or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Please note that at this time, there are no other plans to repatriate Canadians abroad using charter flights.•
Global Affairs continues to encourage Canadians outside of the country to register in the Registry of Canadians Abroad to receive important updates (https://travel.gc.ca/travelling/registration) and that they check the entry and exit requirements of the countries through which they may be transiting.
Canada’s Borders & Canadian Airports
As announced by Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, Canada is closing its borders to non-Canadian citizens with the exception of their immediate families, permanent residents, diplomats, air crews, and U.S. citizens at this time. Anyone who has symptoms of COVID-19 will not be able to enter Canada. In addition, as of March 18, 2020, only four Canadian airports (Montreal, Toronto, Calgary and Vancouver) will receive international flights, to enhance screening. The Prime Minister also said the government will support Canadians currently abroad through a program that will either cover the costs to return Canadians home or cover their basic needs while they wait to return.
Please be advised:
Canadian citizens exhibiting COVID-19 symptoms will not be able to board international flights returning to Canada;
Canada-US border is closed to all non-essential travel.
Risk to Canadians
Currently, the Government of Canada has advised the public health risk associated with COVID-19 is low for the general population in Canada, but this could change rapidly. There is an increased risk of more severe outcomes for Canadians:
• aged 65 and over;
• with compromised immune systems;
• with underlying medical conditions.
How Canada is Monitoring COVID-19
The Public Health Agency of Canada is working with provinces, territories and international partners, including the World Health Organization, to actively monitor the situation. Global efforts are focused on containment of the outbreak and the prevention of further spread.
Canada's Chief Public Health Officer of Canada is in close contact with provincial and territorial Chief Medical Officers of Health to ensure that any cases of COVID-19 occurring in Canada continue to be rapidly identified and managed in order to protect the health of Canadians.
Canada's National Microbiology Laboratory is performing diagnostic testing for the virus that causes COVID-19.
The laboratory is working in close collaboration with provincial and territorial public health laboratories, which are now able to test for COVID-19.
Symptoms of COVID-19
Those who are infected with COVID-19 may have little to no symptoms. You may not know you have symptoms of COVID-19 because they are similar to a cold or flu.
Symptoms may take up to 14 days to appear after exposure to COVID-19. This is the longest known infectious period for this disease. The Public Health Agency of Canada is currently investigating if the virus can be transmitted to others if someone is not showing symptoms. While experts believe that it is possible, it is considered to be rare.
Symptoms have included:
• difficulty breathing
• pneumonia in both lungs
If you become ill
If you feel sick during travel to Canada or upon arrival, inform the flight attendant, cruise staff or a Canadian border services officer. They will decide whether you need further medical assessment by a quarantine officer.
If you are ill and must visit a health care professional, call ahead or tell them when you arrive that you have a respiratory illness. You may be asked to wear a mask while waiting for or receiving treatment to prevent the spread of the illness.
If you have travelled abroad and you develop fever, cough, or difficulty breathing in the next 14 days:
• isolate yourself within the home as quickly as possible and
• call your health care provider or public health authority.
Being Prepared During COVID-19
All Canadians need to consider proactive measures we can each take to remain healthy and do our part to minimize the spread of COVID-19. Now, just as always during any flu season, stay at home if you’re sick and encourage those around you to do the same until they no longer have any symptoms.
COVID-19, like many viruses, is spread through contact. Avoid shaking hands, hugging, and kissing. Share a friendly wave or an elbow bump instead to prevent the spread.
In addition, practise frequent hand hygiene, as well as coughing and sneezing etiquette. Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces, such as toys and door handles.
If COVID-19 becomes a common in Dufferin-Caledon, residents should think about how to adjust behaviours and routines to minimize the spread of infection. For more tips and guidance on making a plan, including filling prescriptions; stocking up on essentials and avoiding panic buying; caring for those who are ill; receiving reliable information; and communicating with neighbours, friends, and loved ones, please visit https://www.canada.ca/2019-novel-coronavirus-infection/being-prepared.html
This is a term which has arisen with the spread of COVID-19. It means making a conscious effort to avoid close contact with others by establishing and maintaining a two metre (or six feet) distance from other people. It is not the same as self-isolation.
We must reiterate that this situation is rapidly changing and evolving. For the most up-to-date information, please visit Canada.ca or press the button below: