COVID19 FAQ

COVID-19 FAQ 

COVID-19 Vaccines

Click Here to be redirected to the Ontario Government's COVID-19 Fact Sheet where the most commonly asked questions are answered. Don't see your question on this list? Email us at contact-us@nosh.ca

Click Here to be redirected to the Ontario Provincial Government's document: "COVID-19 What you need to know before your COVID-19 vaccine appointment"

Marathon and Area

Thunder Bay District Health Unit (TBDHU)

The TBDHU will be holding vaccine clinics weekly in the new year, starting Jan 4th. Only a few clinics will be posted at a time, so if the appointments you see are full or do not work for you, please continue to check back.

Click here to book your appointment with TBDHU

NOTE: You may also use the above provincial booking system for appointments in Thunder Bay if you are travelling to the city for any reason.

Marathon IDA

Click Here To Book Your Appointment With The Marathon IDA

Or call them at: 807-229-1670

 


Terrace Bay/Schreiber and Area 

Thunder Bay District Health Unit (TBDHU)

The TBDHU will be holding vaccine clinics weekly in the new year, starting Jan 4th. Only a few clinics will be posted at a time, so if the appointments you see are full or do not work for you, please continue to check back.

Click here to book your appointment with TBDHU

NOTE: You may also use the above provincial booking system for appointments in Thunder Bay if you are travelling to the city for any reason.

 

North Shore Family Health Team/North of Superior Healthcare Group

If you are a senior in Terrace Bay, Schreiber, Rossport and Pays Plat and do not have an appointment booked for your booster, please call 823-3828. 

 

Stewarts Pharmacy

Click here to book your appointment with Stewarts Pharmacy
Your vaccination receipt can be accessed online through the provincial system (not accessible using Internet Explorer): https://covid19.ontariohealth.ca/

COVID-19 Basics 

COVID-19 or SARS-CoV-2 is a new disease that has not previously been identified in humans. It comes from the coronavirus family, which is a large family of viruses, where some can cause illness in people and others can cause illnesses in animals. Human coronaviruses are common and are typically associated with mild illnesses, similar to the common cold. Rarely do animal coronaviruses infect people and even more rarely can these viruses be spread from person to person through close contact.

There have been 2 other specific coronaviruses that have spread from animals to humans which have caused severe illness in humans. There are: SARS CoV and MERS CoV

Everyone is at risk of getting COVID-19 but those with an increased risk of a more sever outcomes are those that are aged 70 and over, have compromised immune systems and those with underlying medical conditions.

The 2019 novel coronavirus outbreak was first identified in Wuhan, Hubei Province, China in late 2019. The World Health Organization (WHO) classified COVID-19 as a global pandemic on March 11, 2020. 

The virus that causes COVID-19 is constantly changing and new variants of the virus are expected to occur. Sometimes the new variants will emerge and then disappear while other times, new variants will persist. 

In order to slow down the spread of COVID-19 and creation of variants, be sure to: 

  • Get a COVID-19 vaccine as soon as possible
  • Wear a mask
  • Stay 6 feet apart from others who don't live with you
  • Avoid crowds and poorly ventilated indoor spaces
  • Test to prevent the spread
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water. Use hand sanitizer if soap and water aren't available. 

For more information on variants and the current Variants of Concern, visit CDC: About Variants

 


Symptoms and Testing 

Symptoms of COVID-19, including variant of concern strains, range from mild — like the flu and other common respiratory infections — to severe and can vary from person to person. 

Call 911 if you are experiencing any of the following symptoms:

  • severe difficulty breathing (struggling for each breath, can only speak in single words)
  • severe chest pain (constant tightness or crushing sensation)
  • feeling confused or unsure of where you are
  • losing consciousness

The most common symptoms of COVID-19 include:

  • fever (feeling hot to the touch, a temperature of 37.8 degrees Celsius or higher)
  • chills
  • cough or barking cough (croup) continuous, more than usual, making a whistling noise when breathing, not related to other known causes eg. asthma, COPD)
  • shortness of breath (out of breath, unable to breathe deeply, not related to other known causes or conditions eg, asthma)
  • decrease or loss of taste or smell (not related to seasonal allergies or other known causes or conditions eg. neurological disorders)
  • for children under 18 years of age: nausea, vomiting and/or diarrhea
  • for adults over 19 years of age: muscle aches, joint pain and/or extreme tiredness

Complications from COVID-19 can include serious conditions, like pneumonia or kidney failure and, in some cases, death.

If you have symptoms, or symptoms develop, self-isolate immediately and call TBDHU at (807) 625-5900 or toll-free at 1-888-294-6630 or your primary healthcare provider.

If you require immediate medical attention, please dial 911 and explain your symptoms or phone ahead to the emergency department. 

 

Local Assessment Centers

Marathon - Marathon Family Health Team

Open  Monday to Friday, BY APPOINTMENT ONLY. If you are concerned that you may have COVID-19, please call the MFHT at 229-3243, or the local Public Health Unit at 825-7770. They will ask you questions over the telephone to determine if you should be tested. If you require a test, an appointment with the Assessment Centre will be made for you by your family doctor or Public Health and they will provide you with further instructions. 

Terrace Bay and Schreiber - The McCausland Hospital 

Open Monday to Friday, BY APPOINTMENT ONLY. If you are concerned that you may have COVID-19, please call your family doctor, or the local Public Health Unit at 825-7770. They will ask you questions over the telephone to determine if you should be tested. If you require a test, an appointment with the Assessment Centre will be made for you by your family doctor or Public Health and they will provide you with further instruction.

At this time, only asymptomatic individuals who are high-risk should be considered for PCR testing, including asymptomatic individuals who have received a positive antigen or positive self-test kit result, and individuals from targeted testing groups, as outlined here: Ontario Government COVID-19 Testing Guidance

Given that given an incubation period of up to 14 days for COVID-19 disease after exposure, a negative PCR test result in an asymptomatic person cannot be used to rule out exposure and subsequent disease. PHO is not currently recommending routine testing of asymptomatic persons for COVID-19 outside of those recommended in Ministry guidance, or as directed by the public health unit for public health investigation.

Currently, for the NOSH catchment area (including Biigtigong Nishnaabeg, Marathon, Netmizaagameg Nishnaabeg, Pays Plat, Schreiber and Terrace Bay), it takes approximately 1-5 businesses days to receive test results for COVID-19. These wait times are subject to change based on laboratory resources and capacity. Please continue to self-isolate while awaiting test results.

You can access your results to your COVID-19 test by visiting: Ontario COVID-19 Test Results 

If you receive a positive test result, you will be contacted by the Thunder Bay District Health Unit who will advise you to self-isolate immediately.  They will provide you and your close contacts with further instructions. Please note that only individuals who have tested POSITIVE for COVID-19 will be contacted by the TBDHU. 

There are different types of close contacts including:

  • Household (people who live in the same house),
  • Community (people in close contact during flights, personal care or other close interaction for a significant amount of time) or
  • Any other individual who had similar close physical contact including face-to-face contact within 2 metres and for more than 15 minutes.

If you are deemed a close contact of someone who tests positive for COVID-19, a public health nurse will contact you and advise you to self-isolate and get tested for COVID-19 if you develop symptoms.  


How COVID-19 Spreads, Ways to Protect Yourself/Family and Physical Distancing

COVID-19 are commonly spread through:

  • respiratory droplets generated when you cough, sneeze, breathe, sing, shout or talk 
  • close, prolonged personal contact, such as touching or shaking hands that is within 2 metres and for at least 15 minutes
  • touching something with the virus on it, then touching your mouth, nose or eyes before washing your hands.

You can transmit COVID-19 before you start showing symptoms or without ever developing symptoms. 

To help protect yourself you should:

  • get vaccinated and get any boosters that become recommended 
  • wash your hands frequently using soap and water for at least 20 seconds or use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer (minimum 60% alcohol)
  • stay at home when you are sick
  • improve ventilation
  • wear a mask
  • practice physical distancing 
  • use caution in closed spaces and crowded places
  • follow all travel-related measures 
  • avoid touching your face, in particular your mouth, nose or eyes, especially with unwashed hands
  • cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or your upper sleeve when you cough or sneeze. Immediately throw away used tissues and wash your hands with soap and water or an alcohol based hand sanitizer
  • clean and disinfect high-touch areas frequently.
  • stay informed and follow public health advice

Physical distancing is the steps taken to limit the number of people that you come into close contact with and is provent to be one of the most effective ways to reduce the spread of illness during an outbreak. 

Visit TBDHU: Physical Distancing to learn more about how to practice physical distancing. 

 


Self-Isolation and Caring for Someone with COVID-19

Self isolation is when you have been instructed to separate yourself from others, with the purpose of preventing the spread of the virus, including from those within your home. 

You should self-isolate if you: 

  • have symptoms of COVID-19
  • have tested positive for COVID-19 or 
  • have been exposed to COVID-19 and are directed to self-isolate by a public health until or your health care provider. 

If you have been instructed to self-isolate, please visit: Public Health Ontario: How to Self-Isolate

For more information on Self-isolation please visit: TBDHU: Self-isolation

If you are caring for or living with someone who has the virus, you are considered a 'close contact'. The TBDHU health unit will give you special instructions about how to monitor your own health, what to do if you start to feel sick and how to contact them. Be sure to tell health care providers that you are a close contact of someone with COVID-19. 

Click here for a Self-Isolation: Guide for caregivers, household members and close contacts by Public Health Ontario 

 


Pregnant Women and COVID-19

Pregnant people are at increased risk for severe outcomes of COVID-19. 

Evidence shows that mRNA COVID-19 vaccines are safe for people who are pregnant, breastfeeding or trying to conceive and is highly recommended by many national and international organizations. Several studies have demonstrated that vaccination in pregnancy has no impact on: 

  • pregnancy outcomes (including miscarriage, premature birth, fetal growth restriction and high blood pressure during pregnancy)
  • medical complications of pregnancy
  • maternal death. 

The benefits of getting vaccinated to prevent potential complications in pregnancy far outweigh the risks. Not only will the vaccine protect you from  infection, it will reduce the risk of severe illness and complications related to  infections in pregnancy. And, studies suggest the antibodies your body develops following vaccination will pass to your baby, which may keep them safe after birth.

The risks associated with pregnant women who contract COVID-19 are: 

  • five times more likely to be hospitalized and spend 3.73 days longer in hospital
  • ten times more likely to be admitted to the intensive care unit (ICU)
  • more likely to suffer from severe illness
  • more likely to require ventilation/life support breathing

In addition, covid 19 infection in pregnancy significantly increases the risk of:

  • stillbirth
  • premature birth
  • high blood pressure
  • caesarean delivery
  • low birth weight

There is also an increased risk that the baby will need to be admitted to neonatal intensive care.

Click here or here for more information on COVID-19 and pregnancy, childbirth and newborns. 


COVID-19 and Animals 

At this time, there is no evidence that animals play a significant role in the spread of COVID-19 to people. Pets worldwide, including cats and dogs, have been infected with the virus that causes COVID-19 mostly after close contact with people with COVID-19 but there are no cases of animals spreading the virus to humans. If you are sick with COVID-19 (either suspected or confirmed by a test), you should avoid contact with your pets and other animals. 

Pets infected with COVID-19 may or may not get sick and of the pets that have gotten sick, most only had mild illness and fully recovered. Serious illness in pets is extremely rare. If your pet is sick and you think it may be COVID-19 or you are sick with COVID-19 and your pet becomes sick, do not take your pet to the veterinary clinic yourself. Call your veterinarian and let them know you are sick with COVID-19. 

Click here for more information regarding pets from the CDC.

Currently there is no evidence to suggest the virus that causes COVID-19 is circulating in free-living wildlife in Canada, or that wildlife might be a source of infection for people in Canada. Further studies will be needed to understand whether the infection could be spread among wildlife or if it could spread to other animals, including pets.

Even though there is no evidence of wildlife spreading COVID-19, they carry other diseases (even without looking sick) and it is always important to enjoy wildlife from a distance.

For more information please visit:

CDC: COVID-19 and Animals

Public Health Ontario: Domestic Animals


Financial Assistance 

If you need help paying for food and housing and are not already on Ontario Works or Ontario Disability Support Program, you can apply for the Federal  COVID-19 emergency assistance.

For more information on other ways to get help, visit: Ontario.ca: COVID-19 Support

Last Updated: December 29, 2021