June 26, 2020
Premier Stephen McNeil and Dr. Robert Strang, chief medical officer of health for Nova Scotia, announced today, June 26, further lifting of restrictions given Nova Scotia's continued low rates of COVID-19.
"We've now had more than two weeks with no new cases of COVID-19, and Nova Scotians are getting back to normal activities while maintaining precautions," said Premier McNeil. "Continuing the core measures of physical distancing and hand hygiene is how we will keep our case numbers low, especially as we increase gathering limits and welcome Atlantic Canadian visitors to Nova Scotia."
Effective Friday, July 3, some gathering limits will increase. If a recognized business or organization is planning an event outdoors, 250 people can attend with physical distancing rules in place. For an indoor event, the limit is 50 per cent capacity to a maximum of 200, again with physical distancing.
Gatherings not run by a recognized business or organization, for example a family event in the backyard, are still subject to the 50-person maximum limit with physical distancing unless you're in your close social group of 10.
The expanded gathering limits apply to social events, faith gatherings, weddings, funerals and other cultural events, and arts and culture events like theatre performances, dance recitals, festivals and concerts. Guidelines for these types of events are available at https://novascotia.ca/coronavirus/docs/Events-theatres-and-venues-COVID-19-prevention-guidelines.pdf
People can continue to gather in close social groups of up to 10 without physical distancing. People in a group are not required to be exclusive but they are strongly encouraged to maintain a consistent group. People should not gather in random or spontaneous groups of 10.
Businesses that are too small to ensure physical distancing can still have no more than 10 people on their premises at a time with as much physical distancing as possible.
In addition, the following restrictions are being eased, effectively immediately:
-- restaurants and licensed liquor establishments can operate at 100 per cent capacity and serve patrons until midnight with appropriate distancing between tables. Patrons must leave by 1 a.m. They must continue to follow their sector plans
-- private campgrounds can operate at 100 per cent capacity. They must continue to follow their sector plan
-- public pools can reopen with physical distancing for lane swimming and aquafit classes, and one or more groups of 10 for other activities based on pool size. They must follow the Nova Scotia Lifesaving Society plan for change rooms and washrooms. It will take municipalities and other public pools time to prepare for reopening
-- people living in homes funded by disability support programs can resume going out into their communities, although it may take time for homes to make arrangements
Dr Strang now recommends that all Nova Scotians wear a non-medical mask in situations where distancing may not be able to be kept, such as in stores, on public transit, or at gatherings. The exceptions are children under two or anyone who has a medical reason for not wearing a mask.
"Reopening our economy and society is important but it also increases risk, so it is paramount that we continue our public health measures to minimize a second wave of COVID-19," said Dr. Strang. "That includes physical distancing as much as possible, good hand hygiene, cough etiquette, staying home if you're sick and wearing a non-medical mask when you're in public places like the grocery store where physical distancing is difficult."
To date, Nova Scotia has 52,553 negative test results, 1,061 positive COVID-19 cases, and 63 deaths. The province currently has no active cases. Cases range in age from under 10 to over 90. Nine-hundred and ninety-eight cases are now resolved. Two people are currently in hospital. Both patients' COVID-19 infections are considered resolved but they are being treated in hospital. Cases have been identified in all parts of the province. Cumulative cases by zone may change as data is updated in Panorama.
If you have any one of the following symptoms, visit https://811.novascotia.ca to determine if you should call 811 for further assessment:
-- fever (i.e. chills, sweats)
-- cough or worsening of a previous cough
-- sore throat
-- shortness of breath
-- muscle aches
-- nasal congestion/runny nose
-- hoarse voice
-- unusual fatigue
-- loss of sense of smell or taste
-- red, purple or blueish lesions on the feet, toes or fingers without clear cause
Nova Scotians can find accurate, up-to-date information, handwashing posters and fact sheets at https://novascotia.ca/coronavirus . Businesses and other organizations can find information to help them safely reopen at https://novascotia.ca/reopening-nova-scotia/ .
-- testing numbers are updated daily at https://novascotia.ca/coronavirus
-- a state of emergency was declared under the Emergency Management Act on March 22 and extended to July 12
Government of Canada: https://canada.ca/coronavirus
Government of Canada information line 1-833-784-4397 (toll-free)
The Mental Health Provincial Crisis Line is available 24/7 to anyone experiencing a mental health or addictions crisis, or someone concerned about them, by calling 1-888-429-8167 (toll-free)
Kids Help Phone is available 24/7, by calling 1-800-668-6868 (toll-free)
For help or information about domestic violence 24/7, call 1-855-225-0220 (toll-free)
Gathering limits apply to social events, faith gatherings, sports and physical activity, weddings, funerals and arts and culture events like theatre performances, dance recitals, festivals and concerts.
You need to follow the gathering limit, unless your group has an exemption identified in the Health Protection Act Order.
The following gathering restrictions are in place:
gathering limit without social distancing - you can form a close social group of up to 10 people without social distancing; you're not required to be exclusive but are strongly encouraged to maintain a consistent group (people shouldn't gather in random or spontaneous groups of 10)
indoor gathering limit with social distancing for social events, sports and physical activity, faith gatherings, weddings, funerals, arts and culture events, festivals and special events that are run by a recognized business or organization - 50% of the venue’s capacity up to 200 people maximum indoors
outdoor gathering limit with social distancing for social events, sports and physical activity, faith gatherings, weddings, funerals, arts and culture events, festivals and special events that are run by a recognized business or organization - 250 people maximum outdoors
gathering limit with social distancing for social events, faith gatherings, weddings, funerals, and arts and culture events that are not run by a recognized business or organization (like a family event in the backyard) - 50 people maximum indoors and outdoors
gathering limit with social distancing for sports and physical activity that are not run by a recognized business or organization - 50 people maximum indoors and outdoors (participants can have incidental close contact with each other if it’s infrequent, brief and can’t be avoided)
Exemptions to the gathering limit
Exemptions to the gathering limit include:
Businesses and workplaces
Gathering limits apply to businesses and organizations that run social events, faith gatherings, weddings, funerals, arts and culture events or sports events. All businesses and organizations need to follow the Health Protection Act Order and their sector-specific plans, including any specific gathering restrictions.
The Provincial State of Emergency has been extended until July 26, 2020.
April 22, 2020
The Nova Scotia Board of Registration of Embalmers and Funeral Directors is working with Service Nova Scotia and Internal Services to ensure that licensees are getting the information they need regarding the Covid-19 Pandemic situation. Below is an Update Notice and Guidelines. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact the Board.
COVID-19 Pandemic update April 2020
Death Services COVID-19 Guidelines
FSAC Press Release
FSANS Press Release
March 22, Nova Scotia declared a provincial state of emergency to help contain the spread of COVID-19. Nova Scotians should not leave the province and only leave home for essential items and services.
A state of emergency gives government broad powers to do whatever is necessary for the safety and protection of Nova Scotians.
“These decisions were not made lightly and should signal to Nova Scotians the seriousness of what’s before us,” said Premier Stephen McNeil. “These orders may seem harsh but they are absolutely necessary. We all have a moral and legal obligation to obey if we want to bring the spread of COVID-19 under control.”
Under the state of emergency:
Nova Scotia borders will tighten to travellers and all entry points (land, sea, air) will be closely managed starting Monday, March 23, at 6 a.m., Nova Scotians should only leave if essential. Anyone entering the province will be stopped, questioned and told to self-isolate for 14 days. Exemptions for cross-border travel include healthy workers in trades and transportations sectors who move goods and people (e.g. truck drivers); healthy people going to work (e.g. health-care workers); and people travelling into the province for essential health services (e.g. chemotherapy treatment)
Effective immediately, provincial parks, beaches and tourist attractions are closed. Provincial trails will remain open for exercise.
Gathering limits and social distancing guidelines must be followed
Police will be authorized to enforce orders under the Health Protection Act. If Nova Scotians and businesses do not practice social distancing and self-isolation, they will face fines of $1,000 for individuals and $7,500 for businesses. Multiple fines can be given each day an individual or business fails to comply. Police can also enforce offences under the Emergency Management Act. For example, fines for charging higher than fair market prices for goods and services
There are several groups who are essential and exempt from gathering limits. They include but are not limited to grocery stores, gas stations and pharmacies. If possible, one person per family should be designated to do these tasks. Other groups include construction sites, health-care services, community services (e.g. child protection), criminal justice services and law enforcement
New orders in effect under the Health Protection Act include:
Effective immediately, social gatherings of more than five people are prohibited
Any workplace or business that is not deemed essential can remain open as long as a two-metre or six-foot distance can be maintained.
Workspaces must also be cleaned and disinfected at a minimum of twice daily or as required and employees follow proper hygiene
Dentists can no longer practice dentistry in their offices, unless they deem it necessary to perform an emergency dental procedure in the best interest of the patient’s health (in effect March 21)
“This is a significant adjustment for all of us and people are understandably anxious about the changes in our daily lives,” said Dr. Robert Strang, Nova Scotia’s chief medical officer of health. “Nova Scotians must follow public health direction - practice good hygiene, keep a social distance of six feet and self-isolate for 14 days if you have travelled outside the province or are feeling unwell. It’s up to all of us.”
The QEII Health Sciences Centre’s Microbiology Lab is now certified to report positive and negative tests for COVID-19. Tests no longer have to be sent to the National Microbiology Lab in Winnipeg.
If you have been in close contact with someone who has travelled and are experiencing fever and/or a new cough you should complete the online questionnaire before calling 811. The online questionnaire can be found at: https://811.novascotia.ca/
Information for funeral professionals on handling a deceased body with confirmed or suspected COVID-19 can be found here.
Nova Scotians can find accurate, up-to-date information, handwashing posters and fact sheets at https://novascotia.ca/coronavirus .
testing numbers are updated daily at https://novascotia.ca/coronavirus
Nova Scotia’s Health Protection Act gives the chief medical officer of health the authority to give advice to protect public health and decrease risk to public health presented by communicable diseases such as COVID-19
The state of emergency is declared under the Emergency Management Act and comes into effect on March 22, at noon until noon, April 5.
Under the state of emergency government can control or prohibit assembly as well as travel to and from areas. It can also coordinate commerce activity and emergency responders
High-touch surfaces in homes and workspaces should be cleaned and disinfected with store bought cleaning products or a solution made up of one part bleach to nine parts water.
Symptoms can include fever, cough and difficulty breathing — very similar to a cold or flu. Some people can develop a more severe illness. People most at risk of this include older adults and people with severe chronic medical conditions like heart, lung or kidney disease. If you develop symptoms, contact public health authorities.
To prevent the virus from spreading, experts recommend frequent handwashing and coughing into your sleeve. And if you get sick, stay at home.
Additional information and resources can be found through the following:
Government of Canada: https://canada.ca/coronavirus
Government of Canada toll-free information line 1-833-784-4397
Nova Scotia’s Emergency Management Act: https://nslegislature.ca/sites/default/files/legc/statutes/emergency%20management.pdf
Nova Scotia’s Health Protection Act: https://nslegislature.ca/sites/default/files/legc/statutes/health%20protection.pdf
Fact sheet about cleaning and disinfecting for businesses: https://novascotia.ca/coronavirus/COVID-19-Fact-Sheet-Business.pdf
Fact sheet about cleaning and disinfecting for families: https://novascotia.ca/coronavirus/COVID-19-Fact-Sheet-Families.pdf