Ottawa residents warned to be vigilant to avoid the second wave of COVID-19

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Physical remoteness has succeeded in smoothing the pandemic curve in Ottawa, but things could change quickly if members of the public stop following public health advice, warned Ottawa epidemiologist Dr. Doug Manuel.

Ottawa could face a second wave of COVID-19, peaking in September and October, if physical contact increases by as little as 20% in the coming weeks, according to local models.

Speaking during a meeting with Ottawa Public Health media on Friday, Manuel said that a second wave is not inevitable in Ottawa, but will require a “smart distance” to continue in order to avoid it.

This could be a challenge as more businesses open, some day camps open, and people start to have more contact with others after months of peddling at home. The City of Ottawa has yet to announce day camps, although Premier Doug Ford has said they can open.

“As we reopen, we will see pressure,” said Manuel. “We have to be smart. Otherwise, all models find a very pronounced increase in hospitalizations and cases. “

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