Toronto Public Health reports 13 COVID-19 cases among staff at quarantine hotel

Toronto Public Health says there are 13 confirmed COVID-19 cases among staff members at a quarantine hotel in Etobicoke.

The public health unit said it has provided instructions to staff members at the Crowne Plaza Hotel, 33 Carlson Ct., who have tested positive and to those who are considered close contacts. The hotel is near Toronto’s Pearson International Airport.

“The risk to the public remains low as this is a federally designated quarantine facility that is not open for general public use,” TPH said in a news release on Tuesday.

TPH said the hotel will not be fully closed because it provides an essential service.

If the public health unit orders the partial closure of the hotel, under Section 22 of Ontario’s Health Protection and Promotion Act, it will notify the public by listing the closure on the city’s COVID-19: Status of Cases in Toronto dashboard under the Active Outbreaks tab.

The Crowne Plaza is listed as one of the designated quarantine hotels for air travellers arriving in Canada through Toronto. It is managed by the Public Health Agency of Canada (PHAC).

The federal government requires anyone flying into the country to isolate in a hotel for three nights to help reduce the risk of spreading the virus. 

Public health officials are working with the hotel to identify all cases and with PHAC to ensure infection prevention and control measures are in place. Staff are being screened and having to undergo temperature checks at the start of their shifts. Personal protective equipment is also being provided to staff.

The public health unit said it and PHAC inspected the hotel on Monday.

“This inspection found that there is a strong adherence to public health measures and infection prevention and control opportunities for improvement were noted, including further reducing lunch room capacity, posting additional signage and centralizing staff screening,” TPH said.

TPH added that the hotel has complied with its recommendations.

“Given that COVID-19 and the more transmissible variants of concern continue to circulate in the community, it is not unexpected there are COVID-19 cases at this facility or any workplace in the city,” TPH said.

Public health authorities in Toronto and neighbouring Peel Region both issued orders on April 23 allowing them to partially or fully close any workplace that has had five of more cases of COVID-19 over a 14-day span.

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