O-Town’s top doctor has a reassuring message for the City. During a presentation to Council, she confirmed that the new outbreaks of COVID-19 in Ottawa are not linked to popular hangout spots, such as bars and gyms. Instead, household transmission has become the biggest risk factor.\nWhile new cases continue to be diagnosed daily in Ottawa, the City’s Medical Officer of Health has assured locals that public spaces are not to blame.\nSpeaking to Council on Wednesday, Dr. Vera Etches confirmed that Ottawa Public Health has found no outbreaks linked to bars, restaurants, gyms or public transport in the City.\nEditor's Choice: Today's Raptors Game Set To Be Cancelled As Teams Boycott The Playoffs (VIDEO)\nA much bigger concern, Etches said, has been close household contact with people who have COVID-19.\nSpeaking about the risk of transmission, Dr. Etches explained, “I think on a whole, is where people come within two metres of others without masks being used."\n"We are not seeing outbreaks in settings where people are wearing masks," she added.\nThe doctor explained that because “this virus isn’t visible,” Ottawans are accidentally exposing their whole household to COVID-19 before they even realize they have it.\n“People can be infectious 48 hours before they're sick,” she said.\nI'm so proud of our city. The data shows our actions DO matter! Lets keep at it. We need to bend those arrows down in all age groups by learning to live with this virus. Being mindful of our risks & keeping each other safe is how we'll beat this, and WE WILL beat this! https://t.co/JzarHZH1Fu pic.twitter.com/omYNTsRnpt— Dr. Vera Etches (@VeraEtches) August 13, 2020\n"What we have not seen, is we have not found an outbreak in a restaurant, we have not found an outbreak in a bar," she said.\nWhile there was one case related to an employee in a gym, the doctor added that there has been no outbreaks in Ottawa gyms.\nOfficials have not linked COVID-19 transmission to OC Transpo riders, either, said Etches.\nIf someone’s not wearing a mask, remember that maybe they're unable to wear one. But YOU can protect THEM by wearing YOURS. So if you’re heading out, bring your mask and hand-sanitizer with you, and do your part to help protect our community. #BeCOVIDKind #BeCOVIDWise pic.twitter.com/y6g2gcX0t2— Ottawa Public Health (@ottawahealth) August 22, 2020\nDespite these findings, the medical officer doesn’t want Ottawans to let their guard down while out and about in public.\nThese spaces are still "high risk settings" for transmission, Dr. Etches added.\nEarlier this week, Ottawa City Council voted unanimously to make masks mandatory in all public spaces inside apartments and condos.\nThe existing mandatory mask bylaw was also extended until October 31, as part of the new legislation.