GNB gave a briefing to the municipal associations on COVID-19 preparedness, with updates from Health, EMO, and ELG.
Key message: Municipalities should be planning & preparing for the potential impacts of COVID-19, including business continuity if key personnel are absent. If your municipality needs help, contact your Regional Emergency Management Coordinator.

The New Brunswick Pandemic Planning Guide for Municipal Governments and First Nations Communities can be found here.

Health info:
From the Acting Medical Officer of Health, Dr. Cristin Muecke: COVID-19 is of significant public health concern. The likelihood of it spreading is high.

  • Globally there are over 125K known cases, 424 in Canada, four deaths. The majority of patients (80%) are adults over 40.
  • Symptoms are similar to flu; it is likely more infectious & more severe than the flu. The vast majority of cases are contracted from close contact with a sick person; transmitted via large droplets when people sneeze or from surfaces the droplets are on.
  • Best form of prevention: social distancing (e.g. no handshakes, hugs and group photos), wash your hands, avoid touching your face, cover your mouth when you sneeze, stay home if you’re sick.

Planning info:

  • Regional Planning and Advisory Committees have been established with the four regional public health offices and regional emergency management coordinators. They will provide operational planning, coordination, information exchange, and ensure stakeholders (including municipalities) are aware of preparedness & response.

From EMO Director Greg MacCallum:

  • Planning is happening throughout government; EMO’s focus is on consequence management.
  • Municipalities should review their emergency preparedness plans, per the Pandemic Planning Guide for Municipalities and FN, and bring any gaps to EMO’s attention
  • Focus on business continuity. Consider the absence of key personnel who provide public services. This includes first responders, but also public works people, garbage collection, any agency that provides essential services.
  • Do a “gut check” on your capacity to provide services and report any gaps to EMO.
  • If your community has completed your local plans, please share those with your Regional Emergency Management Coordinators
  • EMO is preparing a list of contacts & names with maps so you’ll know who to contact. Contact your local Regional Emergency Management Coordinator if you need info & help.

From GNB:

    • An all-party Cabinet Committee has been formed under the Emergency Measures Act
    • The Premier is receiving regular briefings. There are cross-government DM and ADM-level committees.
    • GNB will share documents and we will share them with you.