March 27, 2020
The emergency programs for the City of Parksville and Town of Qualicum Beach work in unison to provide large-scale emergency support and disaster service to residents of our region. The EMO partnership provides a cooperative and effective approach to managing emergencies in our region and as such has activated a Level 1 Emergency Operations Centre to ensure the best possible response to COVID-19. Most of the COVID-19 related information from Qualicum Beach and Parksville going forward will come from EMO on behalf of both municipalities.
Scam warning - should you receive a phone call, email or text message about COVID-19 do not share personal information. RCMP are warning the public there are many scams circulating which appear to come from the government or health authority. Links may read as "Canada relief fund" or COVID-19 "emergency relief fund." Protect yourself by deleting the message immediately.
RDN Transit - the Regional District of Nanaimo transit authority has advised large buses will replace the smaller transit buses to allow for physical distance for everyone, including drivers. As well, you use the rear door of the bus.
Keeping in Touch
- Oceanside Community Safety provides the KIT program in our region, designed to assist seniors who may be concerned about living alone, possibly with medical issues or recovering from a hospital stay. Volunteers will call KIT clients each day between 9 and 10 am to check in and ensure they are OK. If no answer after two tries, a system determines if help is needed. There is no fee for this service and new clients are welcome. Email firstname.lastname@example.org
or call 250 752-2949 (Qualicum Beach) or 250 954-2223 (Parksville) to register.
QUALICUM BEACH UPDATE:
Due to COVID-19, the washrooms at the Leigh House and on Veteran's Way are now closed until further notice. Public Washrooms will remain open on the waterfront (Highway 19A) from 7am to 7pm with signage asking user to respect physical distancing and personal hygiene necessary to prevent the spread of COVID-19. As well, Rotary Welch Park is closed and those with bookings will be contacted to receive deposit refunds.
Public washrooms will remain open in Foster Park, Parksville Community Park and Springwood Park. Washrooms will have limited hours of 7.30 am to dusk with signage asking users to respect physical distancing and personal hygiene necessary to prevent the spread of COVID-19.
What is physical distancing?
Physical distancing is a way we can slow the spread of COVID-19 by limiting close contact with others. Even though we are not sick, we should keep at least two metres (six feet) or two arms lengths away from one another when outside our homes.
How can I practice physical distancing?
- Avoid non-essential trips, limit activities outside your home and use virtual options to connect with others
- Avoid contact with others. If you are out in public, keep at least two metres between yourself and others
- Keep your hands at your side when possible
- Stay home when you are sick
- Cough into your elbow, sleeve or tissue
How is COVID-19 spread?
COVID-19 is spread from an infected person through droplets spread when a person coughs or sneezes. It can be spread by touch if a person has used their hands to cover their mouth or nose when they cough or sneeze. Touching an object or surface with the virus on it, then touching your mouth, nose or eyes before washing your hands.
What are the symptoms and what should I do if I think I have COVID-19?
If you have symptoms such as fever, cough, sore throat or sneezing, avoid contact with others and self-isolate at home for at least ten days. While at home, drink lots of water and get plenty of rest. After ten days, if your temperature is normal and you feel better, return to your routine activities. Coughing may persist for several weeks, so a cough alone does not mean you need to continue to self-isolate for more than ten days. If your symptoms worsen, for example you have mild shortness of breath, contact your health care provider or HealthLinkBC (8-1-1) at any time. If you are going to visit your health care provider, call them ahead of time so they can arrange for you to be assessed safely. Wear a mask in order to protect others. Self-assessment tool https://covid19.thrive.health/
If your symptoms are severe, such as difficulty breathing (e.g. struggling to breathe or speaking in single words) or chest pain, call 9-1-1 or go to your nearest emergency department.
The BC Ministry of health released an app for information and alerts on the pandemic. The free BC COVID-19 Support app includes a self-check tool, lists of recommendations and statistics from the government, guides on handwashing and social/physical distancing and basic info about COVID-19. Links at https://bc.thrive.health/
and from Google Play and the Apple App Store.
The BC Government has expanded its 2-1-1 phone line to assist seniors at home during the pandemic. Safe Seniors, Strong Communities is a program which matches seniors who need support with non-medical essentials to volunteers in their community willing to help. Call 2-1-1 or visit www.bc211.ca.
For information, contact:
Rob Daman, Emergency Program Coordinator, Town of Qualicum Beach
Aaron Dawson, Emergency Program Coordinator, City of Parksville
Deb Tardiff, Manager of Communications, City of Parksville
Emergency Management Oceanside - City of Parksville, Town of Qualicum Beach