COVID-19 Fraud, from Canadian Anti-Fraud Center

31 03 2020

Constable Jeff Kostuch of the Ottawa Police provided the following:


COVID-19 fraud

Bulletin alert!

As COVID-19 continues to spread globally, watch out for associated scams. Fraudsters want to profit from consumers’ fears, uncertainties and misinformation. Fraudsters are exploiting the crisis to facilitate fraud and cyber crime.

Protect yourself, beware of:

  • Spoofed government, healthcare or research information
  • Unsolicited calls, emails and texts giving medical advice or requesting urgent action or payment
    • If you didn’t initiate contact, you don’t know who you’re communicating to
    • Never respond or click on suspicious links and attachments
    • Never give out your personal or financial details
  • Unauthorized or fraudulent charities requesting money for victims, products or research
  • High-priced or low-quality products purchased in bulk by consumers and resold for profit
    • These items may be expired and/or dangerous to your health
  • Questionable offers, such as:
    • miracle cures
    • herbal remedies
    • vaccinations
    • faster testing
  • Fake and deceptive online ads, including:
    • cleaning products
    • hand sanitizers
    • other items in high demand

Reported scams

Fraudsters are posing as:

  • Cleaning or heating companies
    • offering duct cleaning services or air filters to protect from COVID-19
  • Local and provincial hydro/electrical power companies
    • threatening to disconnect your power for non-payment
  • Centers for Disease Control and Prevention or the World Health Organization
    • offering fake lists for sale of COVID-19 infected people in your neighbourhood
  • Public Health Agency of Canada
    • giving false results saying you have been tested positive for COVID-19
    • tricking you into confirming your health card and credit card numbers for a prescription
  • Red Cross and other known charities
    • offering free medical products (e.g. masks) for a donation
  • Government departments
    • sending out coronavirus-themed phishing emails
    • tricking you into opening malicious attachments
    • tricking you to reveal sensitive personal and financial details
  • Financial advisors
    • pressuring people to invest in hot new stocks related to the disease
    • offering financial aid and/or loans to help you get through the shut downs
  • Door-to-door sales people
    • selling household decontamination services
  • Private companies
    • offering fast COVID-19 tests for sale
      • Only health care providers can perform the tests
      • No other tests are genuine or guaranteed to provide accurate results
    • selling fraudulent products that claim to treat or prevent the disease
      • Unapproved drugs threaten public health and violate federal laws

Trusted resources and advice

  • Reference the latest health information from these legitimate sources:
  • Contact your insurance provider to answer any health insurance questions
  • Make sure you have anti-virus software installed and keep your operating system up to date

 

Cst. Jeff Kostuch, 1579
Ottawa Police Service/Service de police d’Ottawa
Community Safety Services/services de sécurité de proximité





COVID-19 info from Ottawa Public Health

27 03 2020

To all Ottawa-area Community Associations,

As Ottawa Public Health and the City of Ottawa continue to move forward in our response to the novel coronavirus (COVID-19), we are writing to provide greater clarity on a number of communications and ask for your support in sharing information with members of your community.

It is important to recognize that the COVID-19 situation is evolving very quickly. Please refer to OttawaPublicHealth.ca/Coronavirus to stay up-to-date on the latest information. 

For information relevant to businesses and workplaces, please visit: https://www.ottawapublichealth.ca/workplacecovid19

Social Distancing

Ottawa Public Health is urging everyone to practice physical (social) distancing. More information on physical (social) distancing for you and your family can be found on our website.

The province of Ontario is ordering non-essential workplaces to close-down as of Tuesday March 24, 2020 at 11:59 p.m. Further details can be found on the OPH website for workplaces.

Our efforts are needed as a community. The actions you take will affect not only you but your loved ones and our community’s most vulnerable residents. While we appreciate that people are thinking of their loved ones, now is not the time to visit them in person. Luckily, we have technology on our side, which enables us to communicate in other creative ways like video chats and group phone calls.

Physical (social) distancing by all is IMPERATIVE to limit transmission in the community, to protect older adults, vulnerable populations and outbreaks in institutions. We must “flatten the curve” so we don’t see spikes in cases. This means that we want to slow down transmission of the virus and reduce the number of cases in the community that happen at the same time, so that our health system continues to work properly. Here are some ways that you and your family can practise physical (social) distancing:  

  • Talk to your supervisor, manager, or employer about the possibility of working from home where possible.  
  • Avoid visiting elderly friends or relatives. Use the telephone, video chats or social media to stay connected unless the visit is absolutely essential.  
  • Avoid all non-essential trips outside your home.  
  • Keep the windows down if you have to go into the community for an essential trip via taxi or rideshare.  
  • Cancel group gatherings and limit your contact to those within your home. 
  • Hold virtual meetings or get-togethers.   
  • Spend time outside and in settings where people can maintain a two-metre (six feet) distance from each other. 
  • Take precautions to maintain distance in shared spaces in multi-unit dwellings;
    • Avoid crowded elevators (wait for an empty one if you can). 
    • Avoid using the mail room or laundry room at the same time as other residents (keep to a small number at a time to maintain distance).  

Physical (social) distancing does not mean emotional distancing. Check in with others by phone or other technology. Check in with yourself. It’s ok not to be ok. Please know that help is available, and we encourage you to reach out to Distress Centre of Ottawa to connect with someone at 613-238-3311 if needed.

Self-Isolation

Many people are returning home from March Break or winter travel and will need groceries and essential items. It is imperative that all returning travellers self-isolate for 14 days, so groceries and essential items should be picked up by a family member or friend, or through on-line ordering options. Visit our website for further guidance on self-isolation. We have been working with the Ottawa International Airport to ensure this is being communicated clearly to returning travellers.

You also need to self-isolate if you live with, provided care for, or spent extensive time with someone who has tested positive for COVID-19, OR is suspected to have COVID-19, OR who has respiratory symptoms (fever, cough, or shortness of breath) that started within 14 days of travel outside of Canada.

Human Needs Taskforce

Our community partners are working together through the City’s Human Needs Task Force for those requiring assistance.  The task force is receiving, assessing and triaging all social and human needs inquiries, while mobilizing and supporting community organizations to address urgent community needs. The Human Needs Task Force aligns internal city resources, external partners, existing funding and new funding to community need.

Outreach to Isolated Seniors

The Good Companions’ Seniors Centre Without Walls has expanded its services with a focus on outreach to vulnerable and isolated seniors and other populations. Emotional and practical support is provided via telephone. In addition, they have trained 20 agencies (32 staff) to do similar outreach calls through various programs.

Rural Ottawa Support Services is working with Good Companions to provide similar telephone outreach and practical supports to isolated seniors through their A Friendly Voice program, which does wellness calls connecting seniors to local services and programs.

Ottawa Community Housing has facilitated wellness check phone calls to approximately 2,700 residents, focusing on people identified on the Fire Evacuation List.

Food Security

Ottawa Food Bank is supporting the emergency food centres and are coordinating with other task force members to sort and deliver food where needed. Demand has increased by 30 per cent across community food banks. They are working with the Salvation Army to support distribution of food hampers offered by local restauranteurs. The City is providing facility space for safe storage of food hampers.

Meals on Wheels has been increasing offers of frozen food for seniors in the Ottawa area and connecting with Ottawa Food Bank to provide hamper supplies and deliveries. Since the COVID-19 pandemic, they are delivering 100 fresh and 700 frozen meals daily. These services have ensured a supply of full dinners for those individuals in need.

Urgent Transportation

Working with other non-profit organizations, the Good Companions and Champlain Community Support Network are coordinating urgent transportation to medical appointments, assessment centres, and food centres/grocery stores for those with financial constraints, transportation difficulties, and/or health and mobility issues.

Services can be accessed by contacting Good Companions website or by telephone at 613-236-0428.

Volunteer Coordination

The City and United Way of Eastern Ontario are developing a plan to support volunteer coordination during the COVID-19 pandemic. Volunteer Ottawa has established a pool of pre-screened volunteers and will continue to accept new applicants.

Stay Updated

Information is changing rapidly and Ottawa Public Health is working around the clock to provide information to the public as soon as possible.

Please share this information and receive the latest updates by:

Reduce the spread of germs including the flu and COVID-19

  • Wash your hands often with soap and water, or use hand sanitizer.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth unless you have just cleaned your hands.
  • Cover your cough and sneeze with a tissue or into your arm, not your hand.
  • Stay home if you are sick.

Thank you for your partnership.

 





Make some noise to say thanks

25 03 2020
Every day, beginning today until April 8, from 6:30 to 6:45 pm, let’s say thanks to healthcare and all essential workers putting themselves at risk on the front lines as we fight #COVID19. While #PhysicalDistancing, use your voice, hands or an instrument to make some noise.
From Jeff Leiper:

Make some noise for front-line workers

I was pleased today to second a motion with Councillor Kavanagh asking residents to make some noise for our front line workers. It read:

“The Mayor and City Council members invite the entire city of Ottawa to show our appreciation and gratitude to our healthcare workers and all the essential workers who are putting themselves at risk on the front line to help us as we fight COVID-19 so we may have access to helath care, access to food, transportation and other essential services to step outdoors from their place of social distancing and self isolation on Wednesday evenings from 6:30 pm to 6:45 pm commencing March 25 until April 8 with their voices, their hands, and instrument to express a raucous cheer in support.”

 





RNAO asks everyone to join the #TogetherWeCanDoIt campaign

25 03 2020
020-03-19

TORONTO, March 19, 2020 – At a critical time in the COVID-19 outbreak, the Registered Nurses’ Association of Ontario (RNAO) wants everyone to join in and actively show our support for health providers and other essential services.

Beginning Thursday, March 19, 2020 at 7:30 p.m. local time and every evening going forward, RNAO is asking everyone – from the doorsteps of their homes or keeping a safe distance – to cheer on the millions of health providers, social service and other essential front-line workers in Ontario, Canada and around the world who are tackling #COVID19.

RNAO invites Ontarians to show their support in honour of those heroes keeping us all safe, while keeping in mind social distancing. “Step out onto your porch, balcony, or open a window and make some noise. Take a short video of yourself banging some pots and pans, singing a song, applauding, or honking your horn, and share it on social media,” says Dr. Doris Grinspun, RNAO’s CEO.

What:  #TogetherWeCanDoIt campaign to cheer up health-care providers

When: 7:30 p.m. sharp local time beginning March 19, 2020 and every day going forward until the fight against #COVID19 is over

How: 

  • Make yourself heard by stepping out onto your porch, balcony, or open a window and make noise: bang pots and pans, sing a song, applaud, or honk your horn
  • Tell your family, friends and neighbours to get involved
  • Post your cheering-up activity on social media with the tag @RNAO and using the hashtags #TogetherWeCanDoIt and #Cheer4HealthWorkers

“This amazing spirit of human solidarity must become even more infectious than the virus itself.”   – Dr. Tedros, World Health Organization

Let’s make Dr. Tedros’ words a reality!

The Registered Nurses’ Association of Ontario (RNAO) is the professional association representing registered nurses, nurse practitioners, and nursing students in Ontario. Since 1925, RNAO has advocated for healthy public policy, promoted excellence in nursing practice, increased nurses’ contribution to shaping the health system, and influenced decisions that affect nurses and the public they serve. For more information about RNAO, visit our website at RNAO.ca or follow us on Facebook  and Twitter.
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For more information, please contact:

Marion Zych
Director of Communications
Registered Nurses’ Association of Ontario (RNAO)
Phone: 416-408-5605 / 1-800-268-7199 ext. 209
Cell: 647-406-5605
mzych@RNAO.ca

Victoria Alarcon
Communications Specialist/Coordinator
Registered Nurses’ Association of Ontario (RNAO)
Phone: 416-408-5610 /1-800-268-7199 ext. 211
valarcon@RNAO.ca





Cancellations and News in Brief

17 03 2020

Two McKellar Park events have been cancelled due to the COVID-19 outbreak:

  • The Pollinator Gardening presentation originally scheduled for April 6 has been postponed indefinitely.
  • The annual McKellar Park Egg Hunt originally scheduled for April 11 is cancelled this year.

News in Brief

To wrap up the Richmond Rd. watermain project, the road will be repaved this spring, driveways and sidewalks will be permanently reinstated, and landscaping will be completed.

A Kitchissippi Ward-wide community garage sale will be held on Sat., June 6 from about 8 am-1 pm. Unsold items can then be marked “FREE” and placed at the curb since it will be a citywide Give Away Weekend.

Construction of the renewed Tillbury Park is to start this spring and finish in the fall. The start date depends on the spring weather. To keep up to date, subscribe to e-mail updates at mckellarpark.ca and join the Tillbury Park Renewal group on Facebook.

Stage 2 Light Rail Transit construction will restart soon. Along the SJAM parkway, a few of the remaining trees will be removed and:

  • the eastbound lane will be temporarily moved north in the spring
  • on the south side, cut-and-cover tunnel excavation will likely begin in late summer
  • Rochester Field will see increased use for storage and mobilization

Along the Byron Linear Park (BLP) between Woodroffe and Cleary this summer:

  •  hydro lines and poles on the south side will be removed and replacement lines will be buried on the north side of Richmond Rd.
  • telecommunication lines will also be removed and buried on the south side of Byron Ave.

Along the BLP between its western end and Cleary this summer:

  • a temporary sidewalk will be built on the south side of Byron Ave.
  • the BLP will close there to permit cut-and-cover tunnel excavation

For more information, visit stage2lrt.ca.

The SJAM/Byron LRT Working Group met on Dec. 16. While precise details are not yet available, here are some highlights:

  • a pedestrian underpass of the parkway will be built to connect to a multi-use path (MUP) to Cleary Station
  • the existing MUP on the south side of the parkway will be closed during construction, but will reopen afterwards
  • some night time work will be necessary to avoid traffic disruptions [Note from the MPCA: dial 311 to make noise complaints]
  • the new Cleary Station will be built in 2021/22; the west guideway installed in 2021; and excavation will tentatively start in Aug., 2022
  • at this time, blasting is not planned
  • lessons learned about train noise from Phase 1 will be applied

For the full minutes, see the Jan. 17, 2020 posting under ‘News & Announcements’ at kitchissippiward.ca.





CANCELLED: The Annual McKellar Park Egg Hunt is back!

2 03 2020

[Please note: This event has been cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic]

      easter_egg_hunt

CANCELLEDThe Annual McKellar Park Egg Hunt is back

CANCELLED





POSTPONED INDEFINITELY: Pollinator Gardening presentation, April 6

1 03 2020

Please note: This event has been postponed indefinitely due to the COVID-19 outbreak.

Read the rest of this entry »