Release date: April 14, 2020
Information from Toronto Public Health
As part of our ongoing advocacy efforts on behalf of condominium communities during the COVID19 pandemic, the CCI Toronto Legislative Committee has received additional information from Toronto Public Health. Our discussions regarding infection prevention and social distancing measures in condos is ongoing and we will continue to share information with our members as it becomes available.
Information regarding the pandemic changes rapidly, and so we continue to encourage our members to always access the most up-to-date public health information on the Toronto Public Health website:
In our discussions with public health representatives, we identified several areas where additional information was required for condominium communities. The responses received from public health are as follows:
Is there risk of transmission with air flow within high rise building?
COVID-19 spreads through the direct contact with the respiratory droplets of someone who is infected with the virus through their cough or sneeze. These droplets can spread up to 2 metres, or 6 feet.
It may also be possible for a person to get COVID-19 by touching a surface or object that has the virus on it and then touching their own mouth, nose, or possibly their eyes.
At this time, there is no information available that indicates the spread of the virus through HVAC systems.
Are there additional sanitation guidelines when there is a confirmed infection in a community?
Should someone test positive in a residential building, public health will do a comprehensive risk assessment through its case and contact tracing team. Based on this risk assessment they will advise building operators if any additional measures should be taken (including cleaning), in order to further reduce the risk of transmission.
Is there communication guidance (information sheets) for staff or residents when an infection is confirmed?
Whether there is a confirmed case or not, the advice to all residents and building staff should be to practice good hand hygiene and physical distancing to help reduce the spread of the virus. You can find additional information on the Toronto Public Health website on how to keep safe here.
Confirmed and suspect cases of COVID-19 are reported by health care providers and laboratories to public health; at which time public health performs a risk assessment for all exposures including those that may occur in a workplace and/or other settings.
Is there literature available related to enforcing social distancing, including announced fines and potential jail time?
Public health will advise on this issue at a later date.
Are there tips for limiting persons in elevators?
Please see poster on the Toronto Public Health website physical distancing on elevators.
Does public health have ideas or suggestions on how to handle limitations on types or frequency of deliveries and how building staff may be impacted?
Receipt of deliveries through a "middle-man" (concierge, etc.) has not yet been fully considered.
What should be done to promote social distancing from building staff?
At this time public health is not specifically recommending putting up shields however, notices and/or floor markings are prudent.
Does public health have tips for limiting numbers of residents in necessary amenities such as shared laundry spaces?
Toronto Public Health has created visuals to educate residents and building staff about what physical distancing is (PDF), exercising physical distancing on elevators (PDF) and in shared laundry rooms (PDF).
Should guest suites be closed?
Buildings may opt to close guest suites during the pandemic. If they are to remain open, building staff should follow hotel guidelines related to COVID19, which are detailed on the community settings and workplaces fact sheet.
Are there tips for those isolating while shared living in small spaces and sharing a single bathroom?
See how to co-habitate and self isolate while living with a person infected with the virus.
We hope that our members find the above information helpful in keeping their communities safe.