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Student group organizes art therapy project for seniors during COVID-19 pandemic

When the COVID-19 pandemic began, Asad Makhani worried that the seniors he worked with in long-term care, who already struggled with isolation, would see those feelings of loneliness amplified by the pandemic.The results of an art therapy project for residents at the Devonshire Care Centre in Edmonton were hung up on a storefront in Southgate Mall. (Submitted by Asad Makhani)When the COVID-19 pandemic began, Asad Makhani worried that the seniors he worked with in long-term care, who already struggled with isolation, would see those feelings of loneliness amplified by the pandemic. To address the problem, Makhani, a fourth-year medical student at the University of Alberta, created the Seniors Advocacy Movement with other students. Makhani, who also works as a recreation aide at the Devonshi...

Liberals rebuff Conservative push for documents on federal COVID-19 response

The Liberal government says a Conservative demand for a wide-ranging probe into the federal COVID-19 response is impractical and could paralyze the work of civil servants responding to the pandemic’s second wave.Conservative Leader Erin O’Toole speaks as Conservative MP Candice Bergen looks on as they hold a press conference in Ottawa on Thursday. (Sean Kilpatrick/The Canadian Press)The Liberal government says a Conservative demand for a wide-ranging probe into the federal COVID-19 response is impractical and could paralyze the work of civil servants responding to the pandemic’s second wave. The government’s pushback against the Conservative motion calling for sweeping health committee hearings comes as the the NDP and Bloc Quebecois appear set to support the Offici...

Family of premature twins call for mandatory masks inside neonatal intensive care units

“For people who are able to wear a mask — that don’t have any health condition preventing them from wearing a mask — it should be a requirement,” says the father of premature twins.Sina Muscati is pictured in New Westminster, British Columbia on Wednesday, Oct. 21, 2020. (Ben Nelms/CBC)Sina Muscati’s twins have endured a tough introduction into the world. They were born nearly three months premature, in the midst of a global pandemic. Their father says there was even a potential COVID-19 exposure inside the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) at the hospital in New Westminster, B.C., where they’ve lived for the past six weeks. “Very early on, one of our twins was put in isolation because we found out he was exposed,” said Muscati. “He didn...

Deadly day, lasting impact

For some of the Parliament Hill security guards on duty the day a gunman killed a soldier and stormed Centre Block, the trauma of that day six years ago haunts them still.As part of his therapy, retired Parliament Hill security guard Maurice Montpetit regularly visited the National War Memorial, where Cpl. Nathan Cirillo was gunned down while standing sentry on Oct. 22, 2014. (Emilien Juteau/Radio-Canada)Every year on Oct. 22, former House of Commons security guard Maurice Montpetit makes a solemn pilgrimage to the National War Memorial before heading to Parliament Hill. He stands at the spot where Cpl. Nathan Cirillo, 24, was gunned down in 2014 before the sentry’s killer, armed with a rifle and a long knife, raced up the Hill and stormed Centre Block. Ottawa shooting: A day of chao...

Oxford’s Brazil vaccine trial to continue after volunteer believed to be in control group dies

The University of Oxford’s Brazilian trial of its vaccine candidate will continue after the death of a volunteer, the university said on Wednesday. The volunteer is believed to have been part of the control group and had not received the vaccine, a source told Reuters.The University of Oxford’s Brazilian trial of its vaccine candidate, which has been licensed to pharmaceutical company AstraZeneca, will continue after the death of a volunteer who was believed to have been in the control group whose members did not receive the vaccine. (Associated Press)The University of Oxford’s Brazilian trial of its vaccine candidate will continue after the death of a volunteer, who, a source suggested to Reuters, was part of the control group and had not received the vaccine, the univer...

Alberta reports 332 new cases of COVID-19, no new deaths

The number of active cases in the province is now 2,836, up from 2,738 on Thursday.Dr. Deena Hinshaw, the province’s chief medical officer of health, updated Albertans on the COVID-19 situation Friday. (The Canadian Press)Alberta has avoided the second surge of COVID-19 cases being experienced by some other jurisdictions around the world, but case numbers here are creeping up. The province reported 332 new cases of the disease on Friday, but no additional deaths. The Edmonton region has 54 per cent of all cases in the province. “I continue to be concerned about the situation in Edmonton zone,” Dr. Deena Hinshaw, Alberta’s chief medical officer of health, said Friday. It’s too early to tell if requests by health officials last week for people in the capital reg...

‘We still have an acute staffing shortage,’ Ontario’s long-term care commission hears

Long-term care homes in Ontario are dealing with severe staffing shortages and may not be ready to deal with the second wave of the pandemic, an independent commission has heard.A dearth of staff was one of the main reasons COVID-19 devastated nursing homes in the spring, the Ontario Long-Term Care Association told an independent commission investigating how the novel virus spread in the long-term care system. (Getty Images)Long-term care homes in Ontario are dealing with severe staffing shortages and may not be ready to deal with the second wave of the pandemic, an independent commission has heard. A dearth of staff was one of the main reasons COVID-19 devastated nursing homes in the spring, the Ontario Long-Term Care Association told an independent commission investigating how the novel ...

Daughter desperate to get dad out of Parkview Place care home feels her father is ‘sitting duck’ for COVID-19

Ginette Sabourin is fighting to get her dad out of Parkview Place long-term care home, which has become ground zero for the biggest COVID-19 outbreak in the province.Ginette Sabourin is working to move her father from Parkview Place long-term care home, due to increasing concerns about his well-being and care during a COVID-19 outbreak. (John Einarsson/CBC)Ginette Sabourin is working to get her dad out of the Winnipeg long-term care home that has become ground zero for the largest COVID-19 outbreak at a care home in the province.  “It’s scary,” said Sabourin, whose 69-year-old father moved into Parkview Place late this summer. “I’m not sleeping at night, worried, is my dad going to die much faster from isolation and mis-care, or catching COVID?” CBC News...

Can Quebec find a balance between a lockdown and freedom?

As Quebec lurches back and forth between confinement measures, some are wondering if there is a more sustainable way of keeping infections under control.Quebec is currently halfway through a 28-day partial lockdown following a few months of relative normalcy. But there is concern that bouncing back and forth between restrictions and freedom could be detrimental. (Ryan Remiorz/The Canadian Press)Having tasted something like freedom over the summer, most Quebecers are back living under a complex array of public health rules, wondering if the rest of the pandemic will be one long roller-coaster ride between extremes. When Premier François Legault announced last month a 28-day partial lockdown to quell a rising tide of infections, he counselled Quebecers to get used to a “fragile balance...

Feds meet Indigenous leaders to discuss racism in health system

The federal government is ready to use its financial leverage over the health system to fight anti-Indigenous racism in health care, Indigenous Services Minister Marc Miller says.Indigenous Services Minister Marc Miller pauses as he responds to a question during a news conference in June in Ottawa. On Friday, Miller and other federal officials will meet Indigenous leaders to discuss racism in the health-care system. (Adrian Wyld/The Canadian Press)The federal government is ready to use its financial leverage over the health system to fight anti-Indigenous racism in health care, Indigenous Services Minister Marc Miller says. He says that includes promoting Indigenous health workers and calling out racism wherever it’s seen. “The federal power to spend with conditions, it’s...

Calls to pursue herd immunity are ‘callous, dangerous nonsense’: immunologist

A U.S. proposal that calls for an end to lockdowns and for people to try to achieve herd immunity is raising alarm bells among health experts who say such a move would have devastating consequences.A proposal to abandon lockdown policies and allow COVID-19 to run unchecked in the population is gathering steam in the U.S. But experts warn it is a dangerous idea that would overwhelm health-care systems and lead to high numbers of deaths. (Blvdone/Shutterstock)The Current19:38The Great Barrington Declaration calls for an end to COVID-19 lockdownsA U.S. proposal that calls for an end to lockdowns and for people to try to achieve herd immunity is raising alarm bells among health experts who say such a move would have devastating consequences. “It’s callous, dangerous nonsense,”...

Heavier breathing, spewing droplets, poor ventilation add to gyms’ superspreading risk

A recent COVID-19 outbreak at a southern Ontario fitness studio is illustrating how certain indoor settings can provide a perfect storm for superspreading events.Pedestrians walk past Spinco on James Street North in Hamilton. The spin studio is currently the site of the largest COVID-19 outbreak in the city. (Dan Taekema/CBC)A recent COVID-19 outbreak at a southern Ontario fitness studio is illustrating how certain indoor settings can provide a perfect storm for superspreading events. The studio, a downtown Hamilton Spinco location, has been connected to 69 cases of COVID-19 as of Wednesday, despite screening customers, operating at 50 per cent capacity and keeping the recommended two-metre radius around bikes. So how did so many cases originate there? And does it raise concern about how t...

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