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Dr. Chirico supports extension of stay-at-home order

'Hang in there a little longer, make this our last shutdown'
20200317 Dr Jim Chirico, North Bay Health unit chief medical officer cd
Dr. Jim Chirico, medical officer of health for the North Bay Parry Sound District Health Unit. Chris Dawson/BayToday

The North Bay Parry Sound District Health Unit held its weekly media availability Thursday morning and the local medical officer of health made clear he supports the extension of the stay-at-home order past its scheduled lifting on May 20. 

Later Thursday, Premier Doug Ford announced the order would be extended until at least June 2.

See related: Stay-at-home order extended, remote learning continuing for schools

"Until we are able to get everyone vaccinated, our only way to decrease the provincial and local numbers is for everyone to follow public health measures," said Dr. Jim Chirico.

"This is why I support the continued shutdown, as the quickest path for long-term reopening is not reopening too soon," he added.

In his address, Chirico advised there have been decreases in COVID-19 hospitalizations and ICU admissions, as well as a drop in the number of people testing positive for the virus daily on a provincial level. The seven-day average has also dropped below 3,000 new cases per day for the first time in five weeks.

However, Chirico noted, although our health unit's case numbers remain low in comparison to other districts, "our trend continues upward while the provincial average decreases. As of May 11, our seven-day rolling average was at 17.7 cases per 100,000 — the highest case rate we've had since late February."

Dr. Chirico advised the quickest way to have students return to in-class learning is to continue following the public health measures so that the provincial numbers continue to drop.

"Let's do what we all know needs to be done," continued Chirico. "Hang in there a little longer, make this our last shutdown."

Stu Campaigne

About the Author: Stu Campaigne

Stu Campaigne is a full-time news reporter for, focusing on local politics and sharing our community's compelling human interest stories.
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