If you were hoping to forget about COVID-19 in 2021, Ottawa’s top doctor has some bad news. On July 15, Dr. Vera Etches told city council that the City must prepare to deal with COVID-19 in Ottawa for at least another year, if not two.
While the COVID-19 situation in Ottawa continues to improve, the medical officer of health explained that the City must continue to adapt.
We need to approach the next year, maybe two years, having the virus in our community and becoming better able to go back to work, back to school, go about our businesses that we need, in a way that still decreases the risk of COVID-19.
Dr. Vera Etches
As the City enters stage three of reopening, Dr. Etches explained that a best-case scenario would be if the case count remains low, with only occasional outbreaks.
Worst case scenario, Etches said, is a major spike in new cases. "We have to prepare for the worst, as well," she said, noting that health care systems should be ready.
That said, another total lockdown is unlikely. "I don't think anyone expects the people to go back to shutting everything down like happened in March," she added.
At the same city council meeting, officials will decide whether or not to pass a mandatory mask bylaw for the City.