COVID-19 Pandemic Commonly Asked Questions

In an effort to provide accurate and timely information to our residents, the following Commonly Asked Questions will be updated regularly as the Covid-19 pandemic situation continues to unfold.

For case number updates and information regarding testing and treatment, please visit the city's local public health online resources. For a breakdown of current cases in Ontario and Canada, please visit Public Health Canada.

How can I get tested for COVID-19 and how is the test done?
If you are experiencing symptoms of COVID-19 (fever & new/worsening cough), first complete a self-assessment at https://www.ontario.ca/page/2019-novel-coronavirus to determine if a clinical assessment is necessary. If the self-assessment indicates a clinical assessment is necessary contact:
  • Your family doctor or
  • Telehealth Ontario: 1-866-797-0000
If you are unable or unsure if you need to see a family physician, call the BCHS COVID-19 hotline at 519-751-5818 to determine if you need an assessment.

Coronavirus infections are diagnosed based on laboratory testing. A specific test for COVID-19 has been developed to confirm an infection, if one is suspected. Testing is done by taking a swab from the back of the nose or throat. An assessment is done prior testing to determine if it is necessary based on symptoms and potential exposures.
For more information regarding symptoms and treatment of coronavirus COVID-19, please visit the BCHU coronavirus website page.
How do I access my COVID-19 test results?
If you have been tested for COVID-19, the Ministry of Health has launched a new online portal for the public to easily access their COVID-19 lab test results.

If you do not have a valid Ontario Health Card or still have a red and white card, please call BCHU (519-753-4937 and press '1').
How has the Brant Community Healthcare System prepared for COVID-19?
BCHS has worked diligently to prepare the organization to respond to patients who present with COVID-19 and other emergencies. 14 negative pressure rooms, including an operating room are ready. The laboratory is working to become accredited to be able to complete local COVID-19 testing which will allow for faster results. Safety measures for staff and physicians, and processes to manage limited medical supplies have been implemented. Staff are being provided the necessary educational tools to provide the right care to patients with COVID-19. To learn more about how BCHS is preparing for COVID-19, you can listen to Episode 12 of Hospital Insider: The Podcast.
How many cases of Covid-19 have been confirmed in Brantford and Brant?
The number of lab confirmed, positive cases in the City of Brantford and County of Brant combined is updated daily at 11 a.m. on the Brant County Health Unit website on this page: https://www.bchu.org/ServicesWeProvide/InfectiousDiseases/Pages/coronavirus.aspx.
Do our frontline healthcare workers have enough personal protective equipment?
The Brant Community Healthcare System is grateful to the many generous members of our community who have stepped forward with offers of personal protective equipment (PPE) for our staff and physicians. Our staff are safe and currently have the right PPE to do their jobs but COVID-19 demands can change quickly. BCHS kindly requests that anyone who would like to donate PPE, or supply PPE by other means, please contact BCHS first. We are working swiftly to ensure donations that we require and can accept, meet national standards for PPE use in a health care setting, and align this equipment to our current products. Anyone wishing to donate or supply products are asked to email foundation@bchsys.org or call BCHS at 519-751-5510 to provide:
  • Product description
  • Product code
  • Identify if the equipment is unused, unopened and unexpired
  • Contact name, email and phone number
How are COVID-19 municipal and provincial orders being enforced?

Contraventions of the Emergency Management and Civil Protections Act (EMPCA) and/or City of Brantford By-law violations will result in the attendance of a City By-law Officer or Brant County Health Unit Inspection Officer, supported by a member of Brantford Police Service or Ontario Provincial Police (if warranted).

Should the City of Brantford institute any additional by-laws, they will be enforced by the City of Brantford’s By-law Enforcement Officers and supported by Police, if warranted.

The severity of each infraction in relation to the potential risk to public health and the spread of COVID-19 will be considered when taking enforcement action. Consistent with existing enforcement approaches, a graduated approach to compliance will be implemented. This could include providing educational messaging or warnings to members of the public regarding the emergency orders and, if compliance is not obtained, the issuance of a ticket under the Provincial Offences Act or a summons under Part 3 of the Act.

 

Reporting COVID-19 Violations Frequently Asked Questions

What is the difference between mandatory isolation and quarantine?
The Government of Canada has put an Emergency Order in place under the Quarantine Act that applies to all travellers arriving in Canada from outside of the country, in order to slow the spread of COVID-19 in Canada.

TRAVELLERS WITH SYMPTOMS - Mandatory Isolation
If you have recently returned to Canada and have symptoms, you must self-isolate. This is mandatory. If required, immediate medical attention will be provided upon arrival in Canada.

Mandatory isolation means you MUST:
  • Go directly to the place where you will isolate, without delay, and stay there for 14 days
  • Go to your place of isolation using private transportation only, such as your personal vehicle
  • Stay inside your home
  • Not leave your place of isolation unless it's to seek medical attention
  • Do not go to school, work, other public areas or use public transportation (e.g., buses, taxis)
  • Stay in a separate room and use a separate bathroom from others in your home, if possible
  • Not have visitors and limit contact with others in the place of isolation , including children
  • Not isolate in a place where you will have contact with vulnerable people such as older adults and individuals with underlying medical conditions
  • If your symptoms get worse, immediately contact your health care provider or public health authority and follow their instructions.

If you have symptoms but do not have a place to isolate, you will be required to isolate for 14 days in a facility designated by the Chief Public Health Officer of Canada.Violating any instructions provided to you when you entered Canada could lead up to six months in prison and/or $750,000 in fines.

TRAVELLERS WITHOUT SYMPTOMS - Mandatory Quarantine (mandatory self-isolation)

If you have recently returned to Canada and have no symptoms, you must quarantine (self-isolate) yourself. This is mandatory. You are at risk of developing symptoms and infecting others.

This means you MUST:
  • Go directly to your place of quarantine, without delay, and stay there for 14 days
  • Do not go to school, work, other public areas and community settings
  • Monitor your health for symptoms of COVID-19
  • Arrange to have someone pick up essentials like groceries or medication for you
  • Do not have visitors
  • Stay in a private place like your yard or balcony if you go outside for fresh air
    Keep a distance of at least two arms lengths (approximately two metres) from others

You can take public transportation to get to your place of self-isolation after you arrive in Canada, but you must not stop on the way home and practice physical (social) distancing of being 6 ft apart from others at all times. Violating any instructions provided to your when you entered Canada could lead up to six months in prison and/or $750,000 in fines.

If you develop symptoms within 14 days:
  • isolate yourself from others
  • immediately call a health care professional or the Brant County Health Unit and:
    • describe your symptoms and travel history
    • follow instructions carefully
How do I report a violation of COVID-19 orders in place?

On March 28, 2020 the Ontario government issued a new emergency order under the Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act to prohibit organized public events and social gatherings of more than five people, effective immediately. On March 30th, 2020, the City of Brantford issued an order to temporarily close all City-owned playgrounds and other outdoor amenities effective until further notice.

To report a violation of the provincial or municipal orders, please contact:

In Brantford:
City at covidviolations@brantford.ca or call the City’s Customer Contact Center at 519-759-4150.

Complaints Relating to Self-Isolation or Quarantine
On March 25, 2020 the Government of Canada invoked the Quarantine Act. This requires all travelers returning to Canada – with the exception of what the federal government is calling “essential workers” – enter a mandatory 14-day period of isolation, regardless of whether any symptoms of COVID-19 are present.
For concerns relating to returning travelers who are not self-isolating and who arrived on or after March 25, please contact Brant County Health Unit at 519-753-4937 and press '1'.

Reporting COVID-19 Violations Frequently Asked Questions

How do I report a business that is operating without meeting criteria of the provincial reopening framework?
If you have concerns that a business or service is still open when it should not be, please contact:

In Brantford:
Please call the Brant County Health Unit at 519-753-4937 and press '1', if your complaint involves any of the following businesses/services:
  • Child Care Facilities
  • Recreational Camps
  • Personal Services Settings (including mobile and home-based settings)
  • Tanning Salons
  • Food Premises, including restaurants and bars
  • Grocery Stores
  • Farmers’ Markets
  • Places of worship
  • Theatres and Cinemas (including drive-ins)
  • Trailer Parks
  • Schools (Public and Private)

For any other type of business, please report your concerns to the City at covidviolations@brantford.ca or call the City’s Customer Contact Center at 519-759-4150. For more information about what the City can enforce in priority order, please visit: Brantford.ca/covid19Violations.

Business Questions
Companies and workplaces that have questions about the temporary closure of all non-essential workplaces related order can call Ontario’s Stop the Spread Business Information Line at 1-888-444-3659.

Employee Concerns
If you have COVID-19 concerns or questions about your workplace or construction site, please call the Ministry of Labour’s Health and Safety Contact Centre at 1-877-202-0008.
Does the updated 10 person gathering limit apply to private residences?
Yes, the 10 person gathering limit (with people outside of your household) applies to private and public spaces. Based on the Province of Ontario's reopening framework, effective June 12, 2020, the gathering limit permitted with people from outside your household has been increased from 5 to 10. However, physical distancing measures of staying 2 metres (6 ft apart) from others that do not reside in your household, are still in effect. Even with these new limits in place, it's still important to continue to follow all other suggestions for staying safe – such as regularly washing your hands, wearing a face-covering in public where physical distancing is a challenge, and self-isolating if you feel ill. 
Can an exception be made to the 10 person gathering restriction to celebrate holidays?
No. It is still very important that gathering restriction orders, currently 10 people outside your household, remain in place to protect your health and safety and others. Please limit any gatherings to 10 people who live outside your household. Even with these new limits in place, it's still very important to continue to follow all other suggestions for staying safe and protecting yourself and others including, regularly washing your hands, wearing a cloth face-covering in public where physical distancing is a challenge, and self-isolating if have been exposed to someone who has tested positive for COVID-19 or if you feel ill. 
What City facilities are closed and what programs are cancelled or modified?

Please visit the City’s Closures page for a complete list of City of Brantford closures, cancellations, and programming and services modifications during the City’s ongoing response to the coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic.

Please review this COVID-19 Fact Sheet regarding what activities are permissible and which are not in public. 

What activities are permitted in parks and on trails?

While the benches are now open for public use while physical distancing, all other public amenities in City parks (such as playground structures and picnic tables) remain unavailable for public use at this time. Parking lots at City parks and trails are now open.

Walking, jogging and sitting on natural, grassy areas within City parks and on trails is permitted, however, physical distancing of 2 metres (6 feet) from others MUST be practiced at all times. Cycling is also permitted on biking trails that are open in the City of Brantford city limits, however, riders must make every effort to physically distance from other people on the trail.

Reporting COVID-19 Violations Frequently Asked Questions

How do I register my recreational vehicle for the purposes of self-isolating or quarantine during the Coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic?

You may now register your recreational vehicle for the purposes of self-isolating or quarantine using our online form.

RV Registration Form