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News & Events News Bites

News Bites from CDA Knowledge Networks – 2021/09/15

Coronavirus: What's happening in Canada and around the world on Wednesday. cbc.ca, Sept 15: Enforcement of Quebec's vaccination passport system in full effect today. Here's what that means. A reality check on Alberta's path to the devastating 4th wave of COVID. Nova Scotia delays entering Phase 5 of reopening until Oct. 4. P.E.I. will offer 3rd COVID‑19 vaccine dose to immune-compromised Islanders. Businesses hosting pop-up vaccine clinics taken aback by threats. Trudeau criticizes Moe as Saskatchewan sets COVID‑19 case record, trails 8 provinces in shots. Canada was already desperately short of nurses before COVID-19. Now nurses say they're hanging on by a thread. Read more

‘Getting dangerous’: Calls grow for federal action amid Canada’s nurse shortage. globalnews.ca, Sept 15: Two decades into a career she once loved, Toronto emergency room nurse Nancy Halupa says she is almost ready to throw in the towel. “I don’t think I can do a fourth wave with this kind of staffing,” she told Global News. “It’s not good for my mental health. It’s not good for my family. It’s not a workable situation anymore.” Read more

Alberta's 'open for summer' plan set trajectory of COVID's 4th wave, Hinshaw now says. cbc.ca, Sept 147: Chief medical officer says she regrets 'COVID's over' narrative that emerged from decision. Alberta's chief medical health officer now says the province's controversial lifting of all COVID-19 public health restrictions in early July set the trajectory for the explosive fourth wave that has pushed its health-care system to the breaking point. Read more

Province reveals new details on vaccine passport system as Ontario reports 577 new COVID-19 cases. cbc.ca, Sept 14: The vaccine certificate system will cover "higher-risk" indoor spaces where masks can't be worn at all times, including: restaurants and bars, nightclubs, including outdoor areas, meeting and event spaces, gyms, sporting events, casinos, bingo halls and gaming establishments, concerts, music festivals, theatres and cinemas. Read more

COVID-19 is spreading faster than last year among students and staff. Are we being ‘set up to fail?’ thestar.com, Sept 14: Ontario has confirmed more than 300 COVID-19 cases early into the school year — a number that one expert says indicates the virus is spreading faster than last year. Read more

TDSB announces mandatory COVID-19 vaccine policy for trustees, employees. globalnews.ca, Sept 14: The Toronto District School Board has announced it will be requiring trustees, its more than 40,000 employees, and anyone who comes into direct contact with students and staff to be fully vaccinated against COVID‑19. Read more

Some shelter users in Yellowknife were offered $20 to get the vaccine. Was that ethical? cbc.ca, Sept 15: Health authority quickly quashed program, citing ethical 'grey area'. People who use the day shelter and sobering centre in Yellowknife — who are currently at the heart of a COVID-19 crisis in the N.W.T. — were given a $20 "token of appreciation" in exchange for being vaccinated early on in the territory's vaccination campaign, says the head of the NWT Disabilities Council. Read more

Coronavirus: What's happening in Canada and around the world on Tuesday. cbc.ca, Sept 13:  More Albertans are in ICU with COVID-19 than ever — and it's expected to get worse. Saskatchewan government issues emergency order so it can move health-care workers around amid COVID-19 surge. When Nova Scotia reopens under Phase 5, rapid COVID‑19 testing sites will close. Masks return to schools in N.B. as 122 new cases reported over the weekend. COVID-19 cases climb in Yellowknife as schools close until at least Sept. 24. Early stages of 4th wave in Manitoba driven by rising case numbers in south, top doctor says. Calgary hospitals cancel surgeries for 2nd week as protesters outside defend right to be unvaccinated. COVID-19 vaccines to be mandatory for workers in all health-care settings in B.C. Read more

9 Alberta post-secondary institutions to require proof of COVID-19 vaccine to attend campus. globalnews.ca, Sept 13 (Also reported in other news outlets such as CBC.ca, Globe and Mail): Nine Alberta post-secondary institutions are increasing their COVID‑19 protocols by requiring everyone attending campus to be fully vaccinated against the disease. In a joint news release Monday morning, the University of Alberta, University of Calgary, University of Lethbridge, MacEwan University, Medicine Hat College, Mount Royal University, NAIT, SAIT and NorQuest College announced they will introduce a vaccination mandate. Read more

More Albertans are in ICU with COVID-19 than ever — and it's expected to get worse. cbc.ca, Sept 13: 'We are in the midst of a disaster,' says one of 67 physicians formally pleading for provincial action. Read more

National vaccine panel recommends 3rd COVID-19 vaccine dose for immunocompromised people. ctvnews.ca, Sept 13: The National Advisory Committee on Immunization (NACI) is now recommending that some immunocompromised people receive three doses of a COVID-19 vaccine. The latest guidance says that “moderately to severely immunocompromised” individuals who have not yet been immunized should receive three doses of an authorized mRNA vaccine. Those who have already completed a series of an mRNA or a viral vector vaccine should get an additional dose of an mRNA vaccine, NACI recommends. Read more

Want to cut your risk of serious COVID-19? New data shows vaccines are hitting the mark. cbc.ca, Sept 11: Vaccines work. Before we move on to some caveats, let's start with that. A growing body of global data shows that leading COVID-19 vaccines significantly reduce your risk of falling seriously ill or dying if you wind up infected with the coronavirus. That's particularly the case when they're used alongside other public health measures to prevent infections from happening in the first place — and even when faced with the hyper-contagious delta variant. Read more

'Exceedingly few' Canadians will qualify for an exemption from a COVID-19 vaccine: experts. ctvnews.ca, Sept 11: Two doctors and a lawyer agree, very few people will be able to get an exemption to avoid a vaccine. “We expect this to be very, very few people,” says Dr Adam Kassam, President of the Ontario Medical Association. Dr Kassam says there are two “buckets” under which Canadians can be exempted: allergic reactions or heart problems, and both are based on how the patient handled their first COVID-19 vaccine. Read more

Protests against COVID health restrictions expected at hospitals today. nationalobserver.com, Sept 13: Some high-ranking Ontario politicians and prominent health-care organizations are issuing warnings ahead of a number of protests expected to take place at hospitals across Canada today. An organization calling itself Canadian Frontline Nurses posted notices of "silent vigils" expected to take place in all 10 provinces, saying they're meant to critique public health measures put in place to curb the spread of COVID-19. Read more

Demonstrations planned outside Canadian hospitals on Monday. halifaxtoday.com, Sept 12: Hospitals across the country are preparing for a day of protest on Monday with demonstrations against pandemic protocols expected to hamper access to healthcare facilities, including one planned at Halifax's QEII Health Sciences Centre. The group Canadian Frontline Nurses is preparing what it calls a silent protest against mandates in all 10 provinces. Read more

Healthcare staffing shortages an issue 'across the board' in Waterloo region, says hospital head. Cbc.ca, Sept 13: The Region of Waterloo needs more registered nurses. It also needs more registered practical nurses and personal support workers, according to Lee Fairclough. Plus, she added, the healthcare administrators who keep the whole operation running. "It's really across the board," said Fairclough, who is president of St. Mary's General Hospital and regional hospital lead for the COVID-19 response. Fairclough told reporters at a media briefing Friday that healthcare staffers are tired from working through the pandemic. Some have held off on retirement but can't wait any longer. Read more

Long-term care providers across B.C. fear staff shortages from vaccine policy. cbc.ca, Sept 11: Care providers across the province are concerned that the mandatory vaccine policy for employees of care homes will put more pressure on the already struggling health-care system. Starting on Sept 13., all employees of long-term care homes and assisted living facilities will be required to have at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine. By Oct. 12, all workers will need to be fully vaccinated in order to continue working. Read more

B.C. groups call for COVID-19 vaccine card compromises. globalnews.ca, Sept 12: A group of British Columbia community organizations wants changes to the province’s COVID-19 vaccine card, saying it fails to account for the needs of people who face legitimate barriers to getting a vaccine or proof of immunization. Read more

COVID-19: Mu variant confirmed in B.C. — here's what you need to know. theprovince.com, Sept 12: Prior to the World Health Organization’s declaration on Aug. 30 that the B.1.621 variant was a variant of interest and named Mu, the BCCDC had been keeping an eye on it through its whole genome sequencing system. In B.C., every positive test result is analyzed to see whether it is a variant of concern, a variant of interest or an emerging variant. Read more

Covid-19 live updates. washingtonpost.com, Sept 15: Biden, business leaders to discuss vaccination mandates as poll shows public’s backing. The pandemic hit another grim milestone: 1 in 500 Americans have died of covid-19. Read more

U.S. FDA staff say Pfizer COVID-19 boosters improve immunity but may not be needed. ctvnews.ca, Sept 15: U.S. Food and Drug Administration scientists said on Wednesday that a third booster dose of Pfizer's COVID-19 vaccine generates a higher immune response in recipients, but stopped short of saying the extra shots are needed broadly. The FDA staff members said in a document prepared for outside advisors that Comirnaty - the COVID-19 vaccine Pfizer developed with Germany's BioNTech SE - met pre-specified conditions the regulator had set to show that the shot was generating an immune response. Whether the vaccine's efficacy is declining and if boosters are needed remains unproven, the agency said. Read more

Pfizer plans to seek COVID-19 vaccine authorization in November for kids under 5. thehill.com, Sept 15: Pfizer and BioNTech plan to file for Food and Drug Administration (FDA) emergency authorization in November for their COVID-19 vaccine for children younger than 5, Pfizer Chief Financial Officer Frank D'Amelio said this week. Pfizer has previously said the company expects to file in early October for emergency use authorization in children ages 5 to 11. Read more

Cuba seeks WHO approval of COVID-19 vaccines as toddlers next for shot. ctvnews.ca, Sept 15: Cuba on Thursday will seek World Health Organization (WHO) approval of three COVID-19 vaccines, according to the state-run corporation that produces them, as it begins administering shots en masse to toddlers. Rolando Perez Rodriguez, director of research and development at BioCubaFarma, made the announcement during a discussion broadcast by state media on Tuesday evening on a vaccination campaign that aims to immunize more than 90 per cent of the population by November. Read more

WHO reports drop in new COVID-19 infections across the world. globalnews.ca, Sept 15: The World Health Organization said there were about four million COVID-19 cases reported globally last week, marking the first major drop in new infections in more than two months. In recent weeks, there have been about 4.4 million new COVID‑19 cases. In its weekly update released on Tuesday, the U.N. health agency said every region in the world saw a drop in COVID-19 cases compared to the previous week. Read more

Judge blocks medical worker vaccine mandate in NY state. abcnews.go.com, Sept 14: A federal judge has temporarily blocked New York state from forcing medical workers to be vaccinated after a group of health care workers sued, saying their Constitutional rights were violated. Read more

U.S. COVID-19 cases climbing, wiping out months of progress. ctvnews.ca, Sept 14: COVID‑19 deaths and cases in the U.S. have climbed back to levels not seen since last winter, erasing months of progress and potentially bolstering President Joe Biden's argument for his sweeping new vaccination requirements. The cases -- driven by the delta variant combined with resistance among some Americans to getting the vaccine -- are concentrated mostly in the South. Read more

Frustration grows among health workers in America's least-vaccinated state. cbc.ca, Sept 14: The type of protest seen at Canadian hospitals this week is a familiar and unhappy fact of life for medical professionals in parts of the U.S. American health workers have been waging a two-front battle for a while: against COVID-19 and against the anger over pandemic measures within their own communities. Read more

Kids' COVID-19 cases continue to rise in US. cidrap.umn.edu, Sept 14: The American Academy of Pediatrics' (AAP's) latest numbers on US pediatric COVID-19 cases once again show a significant rise in confirmed cases in patients under 18. Read more

Covid-19 Live updates. washingtonpost.com, Sept 13: :Biden wants 70 percent of the world to get vaccinated. It’s not even close. India’s covid-19 wave is receding. Now the world wants it to get back to exporting vaccines. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention added nine countries to its highest-risk category for travel amid the pandemic. Read more

UK to begin offering booster shots to people 50 and over. thehill.com, Sept  4: The British government announced Tuesday that it would begin giving booster shots of the COVID-19 vaccine to people ages 50 and over, as well as others in more vulnerable groups. Read more

Tensions mount between CDC and Biden health team over boosters. politico.com, Sept 13: Senior officials from the White House and the FDA say the CDC is withholding critical data needed to develop the booster plan. Top Biden Covid-19 officials are increasingly clashing with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention as the administration pushes to begin distributing booster shots widely by Sept. 20. Read more

Vaccine experts: COVID-19 booster shots aren't needed now. axios.com, Sept 13: COVID‑19 vaccine booster doses are not necessary right now based on the current evidence, international public health experts — including two FDA vaccine leaders who are leaving the agency this year — wrote a new paper in The Lancet. Read more

Even one COVID-19 vaccine dose can boost mental health, study finds. ctvnews.ca, Sept 10: Getting vaccinated not only protects you against COVID-19, but it seems it can also improve your mental well-being. A large-scale study published this week by the Public Library of Science showed that, overall, mental health scores of participants improved after receiving a single COVID-19 vaccine dose. Read more

Should the FDA move faster on COVID-19 vaccines for young children? Latimes.com, Sept 11: Whether you’re the parent of a young child, a school employee or just someone who pulls your mask up a little tighter at the sight of an approaching gaggle of kids, you’re probably asking yourself this question with a growing sense of urgency: How soon can the youngest Americans safely get their jab? Read more

NSW and Victoria admit they won’t get back to COVID-zero. What does this mean for a ‘fractured’ Australia? Theconversation.com, Sept 12: This may be welcome news for those in Sydney who have been under stay-at-home orders since June, and those in Melbourne who have lived through more than 220 days of lockdown over the past 18 months. It means these states will leave strict lockdowns eventually without having to wait for case numbers to decrease to zero. Read more

Canada’s inflation rate reached 4.1% in August, highest since 2003. globalnews.ca, Sept 15: Canada’s annual inflation rate reached 4.1 per cent in August, the fastest pace since March 2003, Statistics Canada said on Wednesday. This was up from 3.7 per cent in July. The increase in the Consumer Price Index (CPI) is the result of both price pressures and the comparison with low price levels in 2020, the agency said. Read more

Health benefits claims paid out to support mental health rose 24% in 2020: CLHIA. benefitscanada.com, Sept 15: Canadian insurers paid out more than $97 billion in benefits from life and health insurance products in 2020, according to the Canadian Life and Health Insurance Association’s annual fact book. The period, which included the first nine months of the coronavirus pandemic, included $420 million paid out for psychology-related claims to support mental health, up 24 per cent since 2019. Read more

What will the upcoming flu season in Canada look like? ctvnews.ca, Sept 14: Last year's flu season in Canada saw extremely few cases, amid stringent public health restrictions across the country. But as fall approaches, experts say we could see another relatively mild flu season. Read more

Experts fear pandemic drinking habits could lead to a rise in fetal alcohol spectrum disorder. globalnews.ca, Sept 14: The COVID-19 pandemic has led to increased alcohol use, skyrocketing stress levels and limited mental health and addiction services. Experts suspect that combination could lead to more cases of fetal alcohol spectrum disorder (FASD). The lifelong disability affects the brain and body of people who were exposed to alcohol in the womb. An estimated 3,000 babies a year are born with FASD in Canada. Read more

Canadian Vaping Association: Canada's regulatory double standard threatens public health. nationalpost.com, Sept  3 [Press Release]: As Canada considers restricting flavours in vape products, the Canadian Vaping Association (CVA) is astounded by the hypocrisy and inequity in the regulation of adult products. Alcohol, a substance known to cause significant harm to health, and through addiction has destroyed lives and families, has had no restrictions placed on the use of flavourings, nor are warning labels required. On the other hand, nicotine vape products, a harm reduction product used primarily by smokers seeking to quit, have undergone rigorous regulation culminating in a proposal to restrict all pleasant “sensory attributes.” Read more

First Nations want federal party co-operation, commitment to clean water. cbc.ca, Sept 15: Every Wednesday drinking water is delivered to the home of Dylan Whiteduck, chief of Kitigan Zibi Anishinabeg near Maniwaki, Que. His home, which is just a 90-minute drive from Parliament Hill, used to belong to his grandmother, and for years the water coming from the tap has been unsafe to drink. Read more

Have Indigenous issues taken a backseat during this federal election campaign? toronto.citynews.ca, Sept 14: Before the election campaign, Canadians were coming to terms with the stark reality of residential schools with the discovery of unmarked graves. But reconciliation seems to have taken a backseat during the campaign. Read more

Canadians will make health care a ballot issue, new CMA survey. cma.ca, Sept 3: As we enter the last week of this federal election, a new survey conducted on behalf of the Canadian Medical Association (CMA) confirms that a bold commitment to health care will win voters’ support. Read more

Federal election: If all parties agree that we need to end drinking water advisories in Indigenous communities, why haven’t we? theconversation.com, Sept 12. While Canada’s overall water quality is among the best globally — in 2016 a small town in British Columbia won gold for best municipal tap water in the world — First Nations have long struggled for access to safe drinking water. Read more

Would O'Toole's health transfers 'without conditions' conflict with universal health care? ctvnews.ca, Sept 13: Conservative Leader Erin O’Toole’s position on Canadian health care has been a point of debate throughout this election. He has consistently expressed support for “public/private synergies,” praising programs like the private MRI clinics offered in Saskatchewan. He has made increasing the Canada Health Transfer amount a key part of the Conservative platform, promising no-strings-attached funding to provinces. But he has also expressed unequivocal support for Canada’s public and universal health-care system. Read more

Long-term care needs neglected in federal election platforms, despite COVID-19 crisis. theconversation.com, Sept 12 (Also published in National Post, Sept 13): As a long-time researcher of the health and social impacts of dementia, I keep a constant, close eye on what governments do to support 500,000 Canadians living in residential care facilities and 7.8 million family caregivers. Or should I say, what governments don’t do. Read more

Un candidat indépendant pour Bellechasse-Les Etchemins-Lévis. journaldelevis.com, 14 septembre : Un dentiste diplômé de l’Université Laval qui travaille à Lévis depuis 16 ans, Chamroeun Khuon, s’est officiellement lancé dans la course pour les élections du 20 septembre. Après une première expérience sur lors d'une campagne fédérale en 2019, M. Khuon se lance de nouveau dans l'arène politique avec son propre mouvement, Génération R. Lire plus

'All in this together': Party leaders encourage Canadians to get vaccinated. ctvnews.ca, Sept 11: Five federal party leaders set their political differences aside to record a one-minute-long video encouraging all Canadians to get vaccinated. The video was recorded just before the English language leaders' debate in Gatineau, Que. on Thursday night and released on Friday in both official languages. It featured Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau, Conservative Leader Erin O'Toole, NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh, Bloc Québécois Leader Yves-François Blanchet and Green Leader Annamie Paul. Read more

NDP Dental Care Plan Fills ‘Significant’ Gap in Health System, Internal Health Canada Report Says. pressprogress.ca, Sept 13: An internal report prepared by bureaucrats at Health Canada underlined that the NDP’s proposed dental care plan would address “significant” barriers that currently prevent millions of Canadians from accessing dental services. Health Canada’s analysis notes one-third of Canadians are not covered by employment-based private dental plans and nearly one-in-five Canadians avoid going to the dentist altogether due to costs. Read more

O'Toole won't stop partially-vaccinated candidates from campaigning in seniors' homes if they follow rules. cbc.ca, Sept 11: Conservative Leader Erin O'Toole says it's OK for candidates who aren't fully vaccinated to campaign in seniors' residences and retirement homes as long as they follow other public health measures. One of his candidates — Michelle Ferreri in Peterborough–Kawartha — posted photos of herself on Twitter campaigning in a retirement home despite not yet being fully vaccinated. Read more

New Democrats release details on how party would pay for election pledges. cp24.com, Sept 11: Jagmeet Singh put a price tag on his election promises Saturday, saying the $214 billion needed to realize the New Democrats' vision for Canada would come largely through tax hikes for the country's wealthiest residents and businesses. Singh positioned the NDP as the only party with a plan to help make life more affordable for everyday people while ensuring the most affluent pay their dues. Read more

COVID-19 vaccine mandates a key issue in federal election campaign. thestarphoenix.com, Sept 13: Trudeau tried to paint Conservative Leader Erin O’Toole as opposed to such vaccine mandates, to capitalize on the growing popularity of the concept. Little wonder that he tried to exploit the vaccine mandate issue as more Canadians become fully vaccinated amid the rising cases driven by the more contagious Delta variant. The fully vaccinated, who are now approaching 67 per cent of all Canadians, including those under 12 who are not eligible to receive doses, increasingly support restrictions for people who remain eligible yet unvaccinated. Read more

Medical community decries climate change as threat to public health. thehill.com, Sept 7: Rising global temperatures is a critical threat to public health, medical experts say in an open letter. Cosigned by the editorial staff of various medical journals, the letter calls for serious public investment in preventing climate change. They cite heat‑related health issues and loss of biodiversity as two major threats to public health. Read more

Plastic pollution: Could recycling PPE reduce the problem? bbc.com, Sept 7: It is estimated 129 billion single-use face masks are used every day around the world. The Welsh government has set a target on creating no waste in Wales by 2050 and a recycling expert wants the NHS to set an example by recycling PPE. One Welsh firm is now working to turn hospital waste into new masks with 65% recycled materials. Read more

Concerns rise over U.K. flu outbreak amid vaccine delays. ctvnews.ca, Sept 4: One of the U.K.'s largest suppliers of seasonal influenza vaccines warned Saturday that there could be delivery delays of up to two weeks as a result of a shortage of truck drivers. Read more

Vaping is linked to heightened eating disorder risk among U.S. college students. medicalxpress.com, Sept 13: A new study published in the journal Eating Behaviors found that vaping or e-cigarette use is associated with a heighted risk of developing an eating disorder among US college students. This finding is particularly important given the common use of vape pens and e-cigarettes and an increase in the prevalence of eating disorders amidst the COVID-19 pandemic among young people. Read more

Higher stress levels raise blood pressure, risk of heart attack and stroke, study finds. ctvnews.ca, Sept 13: Is that stress pumping steadily through your veins? Even if your blood pressure is normal right now, high stress levels may put you at risk of developing hypertension within the next decade or so, a new study found. Read more

Democrats' Latest Attempt To Expand Medicare Would Hurt Seniors. forbes.com, Sept 13: As part of their $3.5 trillion budget plan, Democrats hope to expand Medicare to include, among other additions, coverage for dental benefits by 2028. It's a dream progressives have been pursuing for years. Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., called for the changes in his 2016 and 2020 presidential campaign platforms. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., recently said she's "all for" expansion. Read more

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September 25-26: 2021 Virtual Saskatchewan Oral Health Conference. Read more

September 26-29: FDI World Dental Congress | Special Edition | Sydney 2021 Virtual. Read more

September 30 – October 2: Canadian Academy of Restorative Dentistry and Prosthodontics (CARDP) 28th Annual Scientific Meeting. Read more

October 15-19: Les Journées dentaires internationales du Québec 2021. Read more


March 10-12: Pacific Dental Conference in conjunction with the Canadian Dental Association, Vancouver, BC. Read more

May 5-7: ASM22 – The Ontario Dental Association’s Annual Spring Meeting. Save the date!

Please let us know about upcoming continuing education meetings that could be of interest to Canadian dentists by emailing us at oasisdiscussions@cda-adc.ca

We invite you to send us leads to news stories worth sharing oasisdiscussions@cda-adc.ca.

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