When Ontario Premier Doug Ford announced the current asylum order on April 7, he said the province’s COVID-19 crisis was worse than predicted.
“The capacity in ICUs and these types have taken us even beyond what they told us,” the Prime Minister said. “The second one I found yesterday, I was asked to start writing orders immediately.”
But modeling was provided Two months ago Identified an impending problem. On April 1, a week before the Ford announcement, Predictions It showed that a new shelter arrangement was important to bring the increasingly catastrophic third wave under control.
Despite that recommendation – and a letter 153 ICU physicians Forcing the province to take drastic action – Ontario waited almost a week for the order to be issued.
Some health experts say the Ford government’s failure to act quickly and decisively on stern warnings exacerbated the disaster and ultimately claimed lives.
Dr. Andrew Morris, an epidemiologist at the University of Toronto, said, “I was very reluctant to be so determined, but this time, there was absolutely nothing to put an end to me.”
“None of this is unpredictable, surprising and a myth to claim that it happened faster than predicted.”
Predicting a catastrophe
On Feb. 11, I felt like I was at least looking for things.
Ontario was under its previous shelter, but the cases were down for several weeks. The third wave is a spectrum, not a fact yet. Still, the situation is dire.
On that day, Adolstein Brown, co-chair of the group of health professionals advising the province, gave a model that suggests that if public health measures are removed, hospital admissions and ICU admissions may rise rapidly, considering the aggressive nature of the original B117 variant and now spreading in Ontario Is coming.
TV reporter John Michael McGrath asked Brown a question: “Did I see anything here? Or does this presentation really predict a catastrophe?”
“No. I don’t think you lost anything,” Brown said after a pause.
A key finding of modeling is that “sticking to the queue to stay at home can help avoid a third wave and a third lock.”
However, the Ford government, encouraged by the small numbers, began to relax restrictions. On February 16, five days after Brown’s presentation, the restraining order for most of Ontario was lifted. Regions were transferred to different levels depending on the province Color-coded structure.
By March 8, the order had been lifted in Toronto and the Peel, as well as in areas with higher cascades, as Ontario’s Govt arch began to rise again.
They were in a locked state, but both essential retail and later patio dining were allowed to open at limited capacity. Indoor dining restrictions will be relaxed in other regions.
On March 26, Ford was asked if the province was over-opening, and very soon the case count and ICU admission were granted.
The Prime Minister admitted he was worried, but he said: “I’m going to be frank, people are tired, I tell you. They’re tired, they’re exhausted right there. They need some fresh air. But please do it very carefully, that’s all we ask.”
In the meantime, doctors have been sounding the alarm for several weeks.
On March 10, two days after the stay order in Toronto was lifted, emergency doctor Dr. Kaship Birsada shared his fears about the third wave with the CBC. National.
The opening scenes of that story are of a field hospital built at Sunnybrook Hospital in Toronto.
“In my transition today, I have seen more events than I have seen in the past month,” Birzada said.
“All the predictions showed that this would happen.”
Anthony Dale, president and CEO of the Ontario Hospitals Association, was interviewed on the same story.
At the time, there were more than 300 patients in the intensive care units of the province.
“You go to an intensive care unit anywhere in Ontario, but especially in our hot spots … it’s still a war zone,” he said.
Watch | Clear warnings a month ago:
‘Absolutely out of control’
At the end of March, there were a number of COVID patients in Ontario hospitals 21 percent more Than the last provincial lockout in December. ICU capacity has been dangerously extended.
“Now in Ontario, the epidemic is not completely under control,” said Dr. Peter Juni, the science director of a panel of experts advising the province, in an interview with CBC News at the time.
Juni said Ontario cannot be vaccinated to get out of the crisis and that the only way to prevent a catastrophe would be strong public health measures – a plea by other doctors.
Morris, an epidemiologist at the University of Toronto, has developed a habit of tweeting daily: “We look forward to announcing today the Ontario government’s plan to prevent more unwanted deaths and diseases from COVID as cases increase exponentially.”
In an interview this week, Morris, a member of Ontario’s Govt Science Schedule, said he hopes the provincial government will pay attention.
“There was a part of me that sometimes the light bulb would turn on and they would recognize that there were still many things they could and could do to mitigate the third wave,” he said.
Strong provincial action will not come until April 1, and it will not be enough.
That morning, the latest modeling presented by Brown indicated that a new shelter would be needed to type the curve.
“In all cases, the cases will grow for a while. However, after two or four weeks in the shelter, they will start to break down and come down,” Brown said.
The government did not take that advice. A few hours later, it announced a so-called emergency brake strike across Ontario, which allowed essential retail sales to remain open.
The move was immediately condemned by several health workers as an inadequate half measure. Video of a packed Toronto shopping center will be unveiled over Easter weekend.
“A lot of people go into malls and make their own little waves and come out without bags, so they tell me they came out for an evening or daily commute. You can’t do that,” Ford said angrily during a news conference on April 6, with the province open. Refers to shopkeepers who were in businesses allowed to stay.
The next day, April 7, care cases and hospital admissions forced the province to tighten operations again. It announced that Brown had recommended it almost a week ago.
In a statement to CBC News, Ford stressed that the government defended its response to the Third Wave, which acted quickly and decisively throughout.
But Toronto immunologist Dr Naheed Dosani said the province’s delayed action on the drastic measures allowed the crisis to deepen.
“We could have avoided this catastrophe,” he said. “It really shouldn’t have happened.”
‘What has been done’
Ontario is now facing an unprecedented health emergency. Hospitals, intensive care units and health workers are all constantly choking.
The Latest modeling Science shows more dark days from the table. Could see up to Ontario 10,000 cases a day At the end of May. Registered Ontario is currently in the hospital, and ICU figures show more than 1,000 patients by the end of this month.
Dr. Nadia Alam, a family physician and anesthesiologist working in the COVID-19 ICU wards, said: “I have never heard of such fears from generally determined physicians.
“I’m afraid of the compulsions we have to do.”
Those choices include determining who will live and who will die once the hospital capacity is completed.
“We need the government to do better. There is no doubt about that,” Alam said.
To do better, many health professionals argue, includes providing paid sick leave to essential workers, many of whom belong to communities of color because they are one of the most vulnerable to infection.
Ford has accused the state of playing politics by claiming sick leave leave from the province, citing the federal government’s Canada Recovery Disease Benefit (CRSP) benefit.
An employee must lose at least half a week’s job to CRSB, and they can only apply one week after they become ill.
Lawyers say there is no substitute for guaranteed paid sick leave for someone who is unable to stay home while sick.
“What has been done,” Dr. Dosani said. “Now, it would be great if we could focus on the resources, the lessons learned and take the necessary steps to support the people.”
Medical experts say another important warning that has not been heeded by the Ford government is concern about the lack of unpaid sick leave – and inaction will prolong the province’s suffering.