Today’s Coronavirus News: Toronto, Peel Gets Green Light to Proceed to Stage 3 Friday; One new case reported in Toronto

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8h20: A judge who was once the provincial government’s lead counsel for the Walkerton contaminated water inquiry and who pursued the notorious Bre-X gold fraud case will lead Premier Doug Ford’s long-awaited commission of the deadly impact of COVID-19 on nursing homes, the Star has learned.

Frank Marrocco, Associate Chief Justice of the Superior Court of Ontario, has been appointed chair of the three-member committee which includes Dr. Jack Kitts, recently retired President and CEO of The Ottawa Hospital and Angela Coke , a former Deputy Minister who spent 27 years in the Ontario Public Service.

Read the exclusive Star story by Rob Ferguson.

8 h Shopify Inc. is reporting $ 36 million (US) in second-quarter profits on nearly doubled revenue as it reaped the benefits of COVID-19 lockdowns.

The Ottawa-based tech company says it earned 29 cents per diluted share for the three months ended June 30, compared to a loss of 26 cents per share or $ 28.7 million (US) the year before.

The company says the continuing effect of the pandemic has been to accelerate the shift in e-commerce shopping habits with new stores created on the Shopify platform growing 71% in the quarter.

“The world is changing rapidly. With the rapid transition to e-commerce, the massive disruption of conventional employment and the growing belief that opportunities must be better distributed, entrepreneurship has never been more important, ”said CEO Tobi Lutke.

7 h 54 World Rugby has abandoned the combined men’s and women’s events in Dubai and Cape Town, the first two rounds of next season’s HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series, due to the global pandemic.

The events were tentatively scheduled for November 26-28 and December 4-6, 2020, respectively.

“While we share the disappointment of the players, teams, fans, hosts and everyone involved in the popular events in Dubai and Cape Town, this is a prudent decision taken with health and good. -being of the world rugby community and society in general. our top priority and guided by relevant advice from government and international public health authorities, ”World Rugby CEO Brett Gosper said in a statement Wednesday.

The 2020 series has been halted with events in Langford, British Columbia, London, Paris, Singapore and Hong Kong canceled due to COVID-19. New Zealand was announced as the winner of the men’s and women’s divisions based on points already accumulated.

Canada was third in the women’s standings and eighth in the men’s standings.

7 h 39 The UK is moving quickly to stock up on future coronavirus vaccines, signing an agreement with partners GlaxoSmithKline Plc and Sanofi to get up to 60 million doses of their experimental injection.

The latest deal highlights aggressive steps the UK government has taken to secure vaccinations for its population of 66 million. The UK has now achieved the highest number of doses per capita, which puts the country ahead of the US, according to London-based analytics firm Airfinity.

The pact follows the UK government’s decision last week to purchase 90 million doses of potential vaccines from a partnership of Pfizer Inc. and BioNTech SE as well as Valneva SE. Oxford University partner AstraZeneca Plc intends to make up to 30 million doses available to the UK by September as part of a pact to deliver 100 million doses.

7 h 35 Russia plans to approve a vaccine against the coronavirus as early as August 10 to August 12, paving the way for what its supporters say is the world’s first official approval of a vaccination against the epidemic.

The drug developed by the Gamaleya Institute in Moscow and the Russian Direct Investment Fund can be approved for civilian use within three to seven days of being registered by regulators, according to a person familiar with the process, who asked not be identified because the information is not. Public.

Previously, state press service RIA Novosti reported that the vaccine could be approved by August 15-16.

The Gamaleya Institute and RDIF declined to comment.

No data has been released on the vaccine, which has been touted by its developers as safe and potentially the first to reach the public. Phase 3 trials are scheduled to begin next week in Russia, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates.

6h26: China on Wednesday reported more than 100 new cases of COVID-19 as the country continues to fight an outbreak in Xinjiang.

The 101 new cases were the highest daily increase in China for weeks. The northwestern region of Xinjiang had 89, eight others in northeastern Liaoning province and one in Beijing. Three other cases were brought in from outside the country by returning Chinese nationals.

5 h 09: The commander of US forces in Japan said strict measures were in place to curb the spread of the coronavirus by US military personnel entering Japan.

Okinawa Governor Denny Tamaki has expressed concerns about an epidemic spreading due to the heavy US military presence on the South Island.

According to Lt. Gen. Kevin Schneider, the commander of US troops in Japan, positive cases among service members and other base employees have risen from 189 to 139 in the past five days. Most of the cases have occurred at Camp Hansen and Futenma, both on Okinawa.

5 h 05: Muslim pilgrims, wearing face masks and moving in small groups after days of isolation, began arriving at Islam’s holiest site in Mecca on Wednesday for the start of a historically unique hajj experience and reduced reshaped by the coronavirus pandemic.

Hajj is one of the most important requirements of Islam, performed once in a lifetime. It follows a route that Prophet Muhammad walked nearly 1,400 years ago and is believed to follow in the footsteps of Prophets Ibrahim and Ismail, or Abraham and Ishmael as they are named in the Bible.

The hajj, which is both physically and spiritually demanding, aims to bring about greater humility and greater unity among Muslims.

Rather than standing and praying side by side in a sea of ​​people from different walks of life, Pilgrims this year are socially distancing themselves – standing apart and moving in small groups of 20 to limit exposure and potential transmission of the coronavirus.

4 h 54: The European Union Health Commissioner is concerned about an upsurge in new coronavirus infections in several European countries, mainly caused by “complacency and laxity” of the public who do not strictly respect the rules of personal hygiene.

In a statement released on Wednesday, Stella Kyriakides said of her native Cyprus that there were also concerns about a localized spike in COVID-19 infections which source authorities have not yet been able to trace.

She says this shows that part of the population is not following health and safety protocols and that a new wave of infections can be avoided if people remain vigilant at all times.

4h03: The government of British Columbia is set to announce its updated plan for a safe return to public schools during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Education Minister Rob Fleming says the plan was developed in consultation with a committee made up of teachers, parents, First Nations, principals, school counselors, school boards, support workers and health and safety officers.

4 h 02: The Ontario government is expected to announce today whether the only areas still in Stage 2 of the province’s COVID-19 recovery plan can move to the next phase.

Premier Doug Ford has pledged to indicate when and how Toronto, Region of Peel and Windsor-Essex will be allowed to join the rest of the province in Stage 3.

All three areas were chosen because officials said they wanted more data before giving the go-ahead for a wider reopening.

Wednesday 4:01 am: The last number of confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Canada at 4 a.m. on July 29, 2020:

There are 114,994 confirmed cases in Canada.

_ Quebec: 58,897 confirmed (including 5,670 deaths, 50,886 resolved)

_ Ontario: 38,910 confirmed (including 2,768 deaths, 34,567 resolved)

_ Alberta: 10,470 confirmed (including 187 deaths, 8,886 resolved)

_ British Columbia: 3,523 confirmed (including 194 deaths, 3,076 resolved)

_ Saskatchewan: 1218 confirmed (including 17 deaths, 907 resolved)

_ Nova Scotia: 1,067 confirmed (including 63 deaths, 1,004 resolved)

_ Manitoba: 391 confirmed (including 8 deaths, 319 resolved), 14 presumptive

_ Newfoundland and Labrador: 266 confirmed (including 3 deaths, 259 resolved)

_ New Brunswick: 170 confirmed (including 2 deaths, 165 resolved)

_ Prince Edward Island: 36 confirmed (including 36 resolved)

_ Yukon: 14 confirmed (including 11 resolved)

_ Repatriated Canadians: 13 confirmed (including 13 resolved)

_ Northwest Territories: 5 confirmed (including 5 resolved)

_ Nunavut: no confirmed cases

_ Total: 114,994 (14 presumptions, 114,980 confirmed including 8,912 deaths, 100,134 resolved)

Tuesday 4 p.m .: Toronto has reported only one new COVID-19 infection in the past 24 hours.

The update, which was announced in Toronto Public Health’s daily case tally via Twitter, marks the fewest new cases seen in a single day in the city since March 10 – long before the pandemic hit its peak. first peak in Ontario in mid-April.

The number of cases has dropped sharply in the city this month.

According to Toronto Public Health, the city has seen a total of 15,338 infected patients, of whom 13,785 have since recovered.

Two more patients have died since Monday’s update, according to the health unit.

Learn more about Tuesday’s evolving dossier

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