As of Monday, March 8th at 12:01 AM, the Simcoe Muskoka District Health Unit (SMDHU) will be moved to the Red-Control zone.

That means essential stores like grocery stores will only be allowed 75-percent capacity. Other retailers like liquor stores will be allowed to open to 50-percent capacity. All stores must post what their capacity limits are and must enforce passive screening of customers. 

Organized events at your home, in a backyard, or park and at staff business facilities are limited to five people inside and 25 outside. 

Restaurants and bars are limited to 10 guests inside and are allowed outdoor dining. Guests are limited to tables of four or fewer. All tables must have at least two meters between them. Contact information also needs to be taken when guests arrive. The establishments will have to be closed from 10 PM to 5 AM.

Gyms can open, but only 10 people are allowed inside at one time and three meters of distance is required in areas with exercise equipment. The regulations allow for 25 people outside. Screening is also required for anyone going to a fitness centre. 

At personal care businesses, all guests will be screened before entering.

Visitor restrictions will be in place at long-term care homes in public health regions that are in the Red-Control level. Only one caregiver is allowed to visit a resident at one time.  Examples of caregivers include family members or friends, privately hired caregivers or paid companions.  General visitors aren’t allowed to visit.  Caregivers must also show that they have received a negative COVID-19 test in the past week and verbally attest to not having tested positive since then.  They can also show a negative antigen test result from the day of the visit.

“While all regions have returned to the framework, everyone must remain vigilant to help prevent any further increases in transmission,” said Ontario’s Chief Medical Officer of Health Dr. David Williams. “The best defense against the virus and all of its variants of concern remains continuing to stay at home, avoiding social gatherings, only travelling outside of your community for essential purposes, and limiting close contacts to your household or those you live with.”

SMDHU’s medical region was placed into the Grey-Lockdown zone on March 1st.