coronavirus toronto

Toronto man diagnosed with coronavirus after visiting Switzerland

Ontario's 36th coronavirus patient is a man in his 40s who recently travelled to Switzerland, according to public health officials, before winding up in a Toronto hospital with symptoms of COVID-19.

The province confirmed this most-recent local case of the 2019 novel coronavirus at 10:30 a.m. on Tuesday through a web page dedicated to tracking the outbreak — a web page which is now being updated by the Ministry of Health twice daily, seven days a week.

The patient is said to have presented at St. Joseph's Health Centre in Toronto's west end on March 9 with respiratory symptoms and a recent history of travel to Switzerland.

The hospital announced that a positive result for COVID-19 had come back for the patient just one day later.

"Proper isolation precautions were followed," reads a statement from Unity Health, which operates St. Joseph's Health Centre, as well St. Michael's Hospital in downtown Toronto and Providence Healthcare in Scarborough.

"The patient's condition did not require admission to hospital and they were discharged home to follow self-isolation protocols," the statement continues. "Public Health was notified when the patient was discharged."

Toronto Public Health (TPH) is currently monitoring 17 confirmed cases of the deadly virus within city limits. Another four patients from earlier in the year have already recovered.

The public health agency maintains that COVID-19 is not circulating locally at this time, but notes that is actively working with provincial and federal colleagues to plan for the potential of local spread "given the global circumstances."

Nearly 110,000 cases of the virus have now been recorded globally, per The World Health Organization's most recent update on March 9.

Of the 3,808 fatalities tracked to date, 686 took place outside China, where the outbreak originated and continues to dominate in terms of both case and death tolls.

Some 28,673 cases have now been confirmed across 104 countries outside of China, according to the WHO — 77 in Canada, according to the federal government's most-recent update. Only one Canadian has died as a result of contracting the virus so far: a North Vancouver, B.C., man in his 80s.

"The Public Health Agency of Canada (PHAC) has assessed the public health risk associated with COVID-19 as low for Canada," reads the Canadian government's own coronavirus portal. "Public health risk is continually reassessed as new information becomes available."

Lead photo by

Jeremy Gilbert


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