Ontario returning 27 public health regions to new COVID response framework

The Ontario government is transitioning twenty-seven public health regions out of the shutdown and into a revised and strengthened COVID-19 Response Framework.

The four remaining public health regions, Toronto Public Health, Peel Public Health, York Region Public Health and North Bay Parry Sound District, will remain in the shutdown. These four regions will continue with the Stay-at-Home order as well as the existing public health and workplace safety measures.

“The health and safety of Ontarians remains our number one priority. While we are cautiously and gradually transitioning some regions out of shutdown, with the risk of new variants this is not a reopening or a return to normal,” said Christine Elliott, Deputy Premier and Minister of Health. 

“Until vaccines are widely available, It remains critical that all individuals and families continue to adhere to public health measures and stay home as much as possible to protect themselves, their loved ones and their communities,” she said in the press release.

Region statuses

The following public health regions will be moving back to the Framework on Tuesday, February 16, 2021 at 12:01 a.m. and will no longer be subject to the Stay-at-Home order:

Charts from Twitter user @imgrund

Grey-Lockdown: 

·         Niagara Region Public Health 

Red-Control: 

·         Chatham-Kent Public Health;  

·         City of Hamilton Public Health Services; 

·         Durham Region Health Department; 

·         Halton Region Public Health;  

·         Middlesex-London Health Unit; 

·         Region of Waterloo Public Health and Emergency Services;  

·         Simcoe-Muskoka District Health Unit; 

·         Southwestern Public Health; 

·         Thunder Bay District Health Unit; 

·         Wellington-Dufferin Guelph Public Health; and 

·         Windsor-Essex County Health Unit. 

Orange-Restrict: 

·         Brant County Health Unit; 

·         Eastern Ontario Health Unit;  

·         Haldimand-Norfolk Health Unit;  

·         Haliburton, Kawartha, Pine Ridge District Health Unit; 

·         Huron Perth Public Health;  

·         Lambton Public Health; 

·         Ottawa Public Health;  

·         Porcupine Health Unit; and   

·         Public Health Sudbury and Districts. 

Yellow-Protect: 

·         Algoma Public Health;  

·         Grey Bruce Health Unit;  

·         Northwestern Health Unit; and 

·         Peterborough Public Health.  

Green-Prevent: 

·         Leeds, Grenville and Lanark District Health Unit; and 

·         Timiskaming Health Unit.

For the remaining four regions; North Bay Parry Sound District, Peel Public Health, Toronto Public Health and York Region Public Health, it is proposed that the shutdown measures and the Stay-at-Home order will continue to apply until at least Monday, February 22, 2021.

After returning to the Framework, public health regions will stay in their level for at least two weeks at which time, the government will assess the impact of public health and workplace safety measures to determine if the region should stay where they are or be moved to a different level.

Visitor restrictions for long-term care homes will once again apply to those homes in the public health regions that are in the Orange-Restrict level or higher. In addition, long-term care homes must implement enhanced testing requirements.


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