Ontario announces rapid response after unexpected uptick in influenza

The Globe and Mail reports that Ontario Premier Doug Ford announced that the province will send rapid test kits and experts to hard-hit areas, and ordered schools across the province to reopen Friday, following a spate of virus-related school closures.

While flu has hit only slightly more badly than usual, the province has yet to see a single death from the flu. The government says about 10,800 people are hospitalized each year with flu-related complications. Meanwhile, the flu vaccine “in the millions,” Ontario Health Minister Christine Elliott tweeted on Friday.

The province has asked universities and colleges to grant waivers for the 65,000 students at schools that are staying closed, as far as an hour outside the immediate area hit by the flu.

The C.D. Howe Institute, a left-leaning think tank based in Toronto, recently released a study claiming that anti-vaxxers could have the potential to cause major health crises like those seen in Europe and the United States this year. In the U.S., health officials have previously expressed concern that the flu virus is spreading faster than in previous years — with several waves of cases reported in only a few weeks.

Read the full story at The Globe and Mail.


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