We are two MBA graduate students from the Goodman School of Business. The impact of the disease, COVID-19 (or Coronavirus) on Canada has been absolutely deadly and alarming. It’s safe to say that we are not the only ones worried about this virus destroying our lives. This virus has made its way to different parts of the world, leading to major economic chaos.
We used to frequently Google the current status of COVID-19 cases in Canada to understand how bad the situation really is, leading to numerous site visits with different case numbers and other inaccurate information. Growing frustrated from this taxing experience, we decided to leverage our business skills to create a platform for up-to-date information that is accessible by everyone.
This dashboard provides real-time information on the province-wide distribution in Canada, broken down by cases and deaths caused by COVID-19. But, wait for it…another value-added feature we have included is the projection of cases over the next few days and details of the healthcare facilities spread across the different provinces. This will help determine how well your specific province is performing with the social distancing measures in place. Additionally, it will also help in identifying the best available option(s) for health care within your province.
(Disclaimer: This data is sourced from the COVID-19 Canada Open Data Working Group. We expertise in data visualization, not epidemiology. Therefore, this dashboard should not be used for any medical decision making. There are updated guidelines on Canada’s response to COVID-19 and recommendations for the same from the Government of Canada.)
Please access the dashboard below (by clicking on the source):
A few key points here:
- The dashboard provides real-time information on COVID-19 cases and deaths by each province.
- There is a heat map (left side) based on number of cases distributed across each province.
- You have the option to customize your selection based on the province(s) you would like to get information on.
- The graph at the bottom helps us understand the number of cases on a daily basis. Additionally, this provides the forecast for that province within the next few days.
- “Details” tab will give you data on the various health care facilities spread over the different provinces.
- If you believe you might have or are showing symptoms of the virus, there is a small section provided to help you take a self-assessment from the Government of Canada.
What is Social Distancing?
The COVID-19 pandemic is real and has reached a point where containment is no longer an option. Social distancing can be the measures taken to prevent the spread of a contagious virus by maintaining physical distance between people to reduce the times you come into contact with each other. The distance recommended by health experts is 2 metres or 6 feet. This would assist in flattening the curve. You might ask now, “What do you mean by flattening the curve?”. Let’s assume the curve represents the projected new cases over a period of time. The idea behind “flattening” the curve is to stagger the new number of cases over a longer period so that people have better access to healthcare.
This is the prime reason behind schools offering online lessons and various businesses accommodating work from home options. The world recognizes the importance of social distancing and the positive impact it can have on restricting community spread of the virus. Play your part and follow these guidelines laid down by public health officials to pave the way for a more humane economy.
What are Symptoms of COVID-19?
Symptoms for the COVID-19 take close to 14 days to show. This is the longest known incubation period for this disease. Sometimes, those infected with the virus may show little to no symptoms. This is primarily because immunity may be distinct for different people. There is ongoing research on whether the virus can be transmitted to others if someone is not showing symptoms.
Some of the symptoms include:
- Shortness of breath
In most severe cases, the infection could possibly also lead to death. You do want to avoid falling under this category, so make sure you always wash your hands for a minimum of 20 seconds, exercise regularly and practice social distancing. These small steps could potentially be your ticket to successfully battling COVID-19. Trust me, you want to be alive to see the world celebrate our victory over this deadly virus.
What does Data tell us?
In today’s world, we rely on data for most of our forecasting. So, after applying a few algorithms for forecasting case numbers, we have come up with the forecast that Montreal, specifically Quebec will slowly become the epicentre of the pandemic in Canada. This is primarily due to a large number of travellers returning from March Break.
We understand that Canada is trying its best to restrict the virus from travelling across the nation but the situation is predicted to get far worse than it is right now. Taking Ontario for example, we have, an estimation of 1,600 deaths by April 30th, 2020 and 3,000 to 15,000 deaths over the course of this pandemic. This might sound like an obvious statement, but we have actual data to back it up now.
We love to help people and would like them to understand the seriousness of this issue. Hopefully, this article and the details provided will give you a better understanding of what is at stake here and help you in making better and informed decisions ahead.
Wash your hands. Try not to touch your face often. Use the various platforms to keep in touch with your friends and family. Don’t hoard toilet paper, and most importantly…
Be kind and stay safe!