John’s Update (April 3)

Well….if any of us weren’t already alarmed enough to change our behaviour, COVID-19 projected death totals released by the Province today should change that. As a best case — that is, if we all do what’s required to keep ourselves and others safe — the number of projected deaths in Ontario ranges from 3,000 to 15,000 deaths. A worst case, if we don’t do what we need to, is many times worse than that.

Perhaps the most important takeaway from today’s announcement is that thousands of lives depend on us following some simple rules: except for emergencies, stay home; even when you are outside for a walk, stay more than two metres from anyone who isn’t part of your immediate household; wash your hands thoroughly and frequently.

In the coming weeks, we will do our best to provide useful information to help us all stay safe. We know there are many in our community who feel the need to go out grocery shopping as their personal supplies dwindle. Below, you will find a list of local grocery stores which provide delivery or pickup, along with those that open early for seniors only.

Next week, we’ll have a similar list of pharmacies for you, and perhaps some recommendations for local restaurants that deliver. We’d like our information sharing to be as interactive as possible. Please let us know your experiences in having food delivered so that we can share them in future newsletters.

We’re also very aware that there are many among us who, even in good times, struggle to feed themselves and their families. Their situation has now dramatically worsened as local food banks struggle to stay open. For our next newsletter, we’re putting together some thoughts on how those of us who are more fortunate can help those who are not.

Today’s information on how deadly this virus could be points to how desperately we rely on the thousands of health care workers who are risking their lives to protect ours. Today’s music clip is from a surgeon singing “Lean On Me.”

Sadly, and coincidently, Bill Withers who wrote and recorded the hit version of the song, died today at 81 (not of COVID-19). Click here for Bill Withers performing the song live in 1973.

Feel the music but, most of all, Stay Well.John

And now for today’s updates and information links:

Today’s statement by Dr. Eileen de Villa, Toronto’s Medical Officer of Health, can be found online here.

For regular updates on COVID-19 from Toronto Public Health, or for updates on the impact of COVID-19 on City services, please visit