COVID-19 : Quebec’s report - March 16th, 2020
Financial program for workers affected by the coronavirus
Eligible workers can receive up to $573 per week
Article published on 17 March 2020
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The Government of Quebec has set up an temporary assistance program for workers who are in isolation and who are not eligible for another financial program due to isolation due to COVID-19.

The lump sum granted is $ 573 per week, for a period of 14 days of isolation.

The Programme d’aide temporaire aux travailleurs dans le cadre de la pandémie de COVID-19 (PATT COVID-19) (temporary assistance program for workers), is intended to offert financial support to workers who are subject to a confinement measure and are not eligible for an income replacement program.

« The last thing I want is for people to risk going to work when they should not due to financial concerns. If we all cooperate, we can succeed! » - François Legault, Premier of Québec

Eligibility
The program will be available to workers who are in isolation for one of the following reasons:
- they have contracted the virus or are showing symptoms
- they have been in contact with an infected individual
- they have recently returned from abroad

In addition, workers who are in isolation or likely to be under the above criteria are eligible for the PATT COVID-19 if :
- they are not compensated by their employer
- they do not have private insurance
- they are not covered by government programs, such as federal employment insurance

The financial assistance will be paid by bank transfer or by prepaid card. This operation will be conducted in collaboration with the Red Cross.

COVID-19: 50 cases confirmed in Quebec
The number of confirmed cases of COVID-19 was at 50 Monday afternoon, 9 more than on Sunday.

Quebec Premier, François Legault, assured Monday that the Government is continuing all efforts to flatten the curve of COVID-19 contaminations and to limit its transmission.

He also recalled the importance for each Quebecer to make his contribution and to comply with the hygiene advice and guidelines issued by Quebec Public Health authorities. “Every gesture counts,” he said during his daily press conference.

Quebec also ordered the closure, until further notice, of the following businesses and public places:
- Outdoor centers
- Places of worship
- All religious gatherings (baptisms, weddings, funerals) of any sort
- Tasting counters and kiosks in grocery stores or in big box stores

Note: The stores of the Société québécoise du cannabis (SQDC) and the Société des alcools (SAQ) remain open, but the number of people there must be limited in order to respect the principle of social distancing. The use of the online ordering service is recommended.

In his daily press conference, François Legault indicated that the workers in health services will be treated as a priority if they are infected by COVID-19. He also welcomed the 7000 CVs received as part of his call for support in this area.

The Minister of Health and Social Services, Danielle McCann, announced the establishment of seven analysis centers in order to reduce delays for the analysis of tests related to screening for COVID-19.

The government finally asks Quebecers once again to limit their trips, not to take part in any gathering that is not necessary and to keep one meter away from each other. He reiterated the importance of staying home for 14 days for anyone returning from travel or experiencing symptoms. In the workplace, he asks to stand one or two meters from colleagues and to favor telework.

The importance of blood donation
Héma-Québec recalls the importance of donating blood, even in the context of a pandemic.
The blood supplier estimates that 1,000 blood donations are needed every day to ensure an optimal level of reserve, which is the case in normal times, as in the context of a pandemic.

The organization is concerned about the sufficiency in the supply of blood products, which have a limited shelf life, which excludes the possibility of storing them.

“Strict” measures are applied at all times, according to Héma-Québec, to ensure the safety of donors and blood. A rigorous selection is made with candidates and only healthy people are eligible for blood donation. Additional measures to disinfect the collection chairs have been deployed by Héma-Québec and 3 additional questions are asked to donors in connection with COVID-19.

According to the Government of Quebec, there is no evidence to date that a respiratory virus, including the virus linked to COVID-19, can be transmitted by transfusion. People can find the designated places to donate blood on the Héma-Québec website, at www.hema-quebec.qc.ca.

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