Staying healthy together
New Brunswickers have worked hard to limit the spread of COVID-19 in our communities. We continue to adapt to the public health measures in place to keep us healthy and safe.
On this page, you will find resources and information to help you protect yourself and those around you.
On this page
– Accessing health care
– Attending school
– Family and sexual violence prevention
– Finances and budgeting during a pandemic
– Getting the most out of your food
– Mental health support
– Protect your community
– Physical Wellbeing
When accessing health care services during the COVID-19 pandemic, New Brunswickers are looking for:
- health care or wellness advice and programs
- non-emergent treatment of a health issue or injury
- to diagnose and manage a health condition
Primary health care includes all the services in your community that support the day-to-day health needs of you and your family through every stage of life.
Services and programs offered include Tele-Care 8-1-1, the New Brunswick Patient Connect registry, how to find a doctor, health facilities, healthcare at home.
- Patient Connect NB Online Registry
- Walk-in Clinic locations
- Extra-Mural Program
- Horizon Health Network
- Vitalité Health Network
The Department of Education and Early Childhood Development has released a detailed parent and public guide supporting the Return to School: September 2020 plan for the public-school system.
The Return to School: Guide for Parents and the Public provides a detailed overview of what students, parents and guardians need to know before returning to school in September. Return to School: Direction for School Districts and Schools outlines the requirements schools and school districts must meet while developing their COVID-19 operational plans, which will be made available to parents. It works in conjunction with Public Health guidance to the department and may be changed based upon the evolution of the pandemic.
The department will continue to work with educators, schools and school districts in the coming months. Schools and districts have made their individual school operational plans to their school communities.
Parents with questions about the Return to School plan can email email@example.com. For questions about the Laptop Subsidy Program, parents can call 1-833-901-1963 or email EECDRTS-EDPERAE@gnb.ca.
New Brunswick’s post-secondary institutions have welcomed students back for the 2020-21 academic year and are committed to ensuring students can safely take courses, stay on track to reach their goals and graduate on time.
What to expect
Our top priority is ensuring the health and safety of staff and students on and off campus. Students can expect classes to be offered in a variety of formats including online learning, in-person sessions, or a combination of both.
Recovery plans for post-secondary institutions
Each institution was required to develop a unique COVID-19 recovery plan that adheres to provincial laws and Public Health guidelines. These plans outline the steps that the institution has taken to resume classes and re-open campus, with the health and safety of students, faculty, and staff as top priority.
Recovery information from post-secondary institutions:
- Mount Allison University
- University of New Brunswick
- St. Thomas University
- Université de Moncton
- New Brunswick College of Craft and Design
- New Brunswick Community College
- Collège communautaire du Nouveau-Brunswick
- Maritime College of Forest and Technology
Other resources for students:
Help and support is available if you are experiencing family/domestic violence or sexual violence. It’s okay to ask for help if you or someone else is in danger. If you think someone could be harmed or may harm themselves, call the police, even if you’re not sure. Keep an eye out for the safety and wellbeing of children and vulnerable adults. Talk to friends, family, neighbours and co-workers if you need support, or to see if they need help. Find different ways to keep in touch and check in with each other by phone, online or other means.
If you are or think you may be a victim of domestic violence, there are people who care and are ready to listen to you, even during this pandemic. If you and/or your children are in immediate danger, call 9-1-1.
Financial emergencies can happen at any time. Whether it’s a job loss, unexpected medical expenses or an emergency home repair, the sudden change in your financial situation can be incredibly stressful.
You may be among thousands of New Brunswickers whose financial health is impacted by COVID-19. Whatever the cause, financial emergencies can leave you feeling helpless and concerned for you and your family.
While the federal government has put financial programs in place to help Canadians, the uncertainty caused by the pandemic may cause many New Brunswickers to feel financially nervous. Here are some steps you can take to better manage your financial wellness during this crisis.
Eating well can be a challenge on its own. It may have become more challenging now due to COVID-19. You may be dealing with financial constraints, disruptions to your household schedule, additional stress or anxiety, and more complicated trips to the grocery store.
- Tips for eating well
It is natural to feel stress, anxiety, grief, and worry during and after a stressful situation.
Everyone reacts differently, and your own feelings will change over time. Notice and accept how you feel. Self-care during a stressful situation will help your long-term healing. Taking care of your emotional health will help you think clearly and protect yourself and your loved ones.
If you experience stress reactions in response to the COVID-19 outbreak for several days in a row and are unable to carry out normal responsibilities because of them, contact your health care provider or your local addictions and mental health centre.
Reaching out for help is not a sign of weakness; it is a sign of strength.
- Mental health and coping during COVID-19
- Kids Help Phone – Text TALK to 686868 or call 1-800-668-6868 to chat with a volunteer Crisis Responder 24/7.
- CHIMO Helpline – Help is just a phone call away: 1-800-667-5005
- Hope for Wellness Helpline – The Hope for Wellness Helpline offers immediate mental health counselling and crisis intervention to all Indigenous people across Canada: 1-855-242-3310
We all can play a roll in keeping COVID-19 under control in New Brunswick. New Brunswickers should continue to think ahead about the actions that they can take to stay healthy and prevent the spread of COVID-19 in our province. Measures to reduce COVID-19 in your community are especially important as some areas begin to lift restrictions.
Everyone has a role to play
We can each do our part by:
- understanding how coronavirus spreads
- knowing how to prevent illness
- taking care of our mental and physical wellbeing
- getting vaccinated
Vaccine is only one item in a toolbox being used to protect against the virus. When used in combination with other layers of protection, including: physical distancing, masking, and frequent hand-washing it contributes to controlling the spread of COVID-19. The following core public health practices will help you protect yourself and your community.
The following core public health practices will help you protect yourself and your community.
Stay informed, be prepared and follow public health advice
Get credible information about COVID-19 from reliable sources. Continue to follow the advice of the Office of the Chief Medical Officer of Health and Government of New Brunswick. The Public Health Agency of Canada is also a reliable source of information.
Continue to think ahead about what you’ll do if you become sick or someone in your family becomes sick and needs care. Plan for how you’ll arrange backup caregivers if you’re a caregiver of children or others. If your work is re-opening, talk to your employer about working from home if you’ll need to care for your family.
Follow the advice of your local public health and adjust your behaviours and routines based on their advice.
Vaccines help protect you and the people around you. The more people in our communities immunized against COVID-19, the harder it is for the virus to spread. Therefore, widespread vaccination is the best option to help protect you and the people around you, especially those at increased risk for severe illness. This will save lives and lead to the lifting of restrictions.
Make plans and talk about them
Talk to your family, friends and neighbours about what you’re doing to stay healthy and prevent the spread of COVID-19. If you live alone, consider setting up an agreement with a neighbour where you’ll check on each other and run errands if either of you become sick.
Think about the type of care you’d want if you became seriously ill. Talk to the people who will decide on your care if you’re unable to. These discussions can help caregivers feel more comfortable and confident in making decisions you’d want.
It’s not always easy to begin these conversations. You can get started with information, tools and prompts from advance care planning.
Continue to practise good hygiene
COVID-19 is a contagious disease. Proper hygiene practices will help lower your chance of getting it or spreading it to others. You should continue to do the following:
- wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds or use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer containing at least 60% alcohol
- cough and sneeze into a tissue or the bend of your arm
- avoid touching your face with unwashed hands
- dispose of used tissues in a lined waste container and then wash your hands
Stay home and away from others if you’re feeling ill
As local governments lift public health measures, you should continue to stay home and away from others if you have symptoms. If you start to develop symptoms of COVID-19, isolate yourself from others and contact your health care provider or Tele-Care 8-1-1. Adjust your behaviours and routines based on their advice.
Wear a medical mask if you’re ill and will be in close contact with others or need to go out to access medical care. If a medical mask isn’t available, wear a non-medical mask or cloth face covering.
Keep practising physical distancing
Keep practising physical distancing. Physical distancing minimizes close contact with others in your community.
Things you can do to keep practising physical distancing are:
- avoiding crowded places
- reducing non-essential travel and trips out of your home
- keeping 2 metres away from others when outside of your home
- commuting outside of the busiest hours if you use public transit
- avoiding greetings that include physical contact, such as handshakes
- following your local public health guidance on the number of people that can gather in one place at one time
Clean and disinfect surfaces and objects
In your personal environment, clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces and objects. This will help lower the spread of COVID-19.
Frequently touched surfaces and objects include:
- door handles
- bedside tables
- television remotes
Stay home if you have a higher risk of serious illness
Some people have a higher risk of getting seriously ill. Stay at home as much as possible if you:
- are an older adult
- have an underlying medical condition
- have a compromised immune system
Talk with your health care provider about how to protect yourself. If you have an increased risk of illness and you’re working outside the home, consider working from home if possible.
Ask your family, a neighbour or friend to help you with essential errands, like picking up prescriptions and buying groceries.
Wear a community face mask help stop the spread of COVID-19, especially if it’s not possible to consistently maintain a 2-metre physical distance from others. Wear your mask or cloth face covering safely and make sure it fits well.
You can check with your local public health authority on the requirements for your location. This will depend on the rate of infection or spread of COVID-19 in your community. Follow the advice of your local public health authority when it comes to wearing a non-medical mask or cloth face covering.
For specific mask alert level guidance see the COVID-19 Alert Levels
Continuous mask use is still required in seated venues with one metre physical distancing.
Previously existing mask policies continue to apply in hospitals, health care settings, public schools and early childhood learning facilities.
Limit non-essential travel
If you’re planning on travelling outside your province or territory, check to see if your destination has different public health measures.
To limit the spread of COVID-19, we advise avoiding all non-essential travel outside of Canada until further notice.
Physical activity promotes health
- Participation in sport and recreational activities are vital to the health and wellbeing of New Brunswickers.
- Warmer weather and longer days promote time spent outdoors.
- Healthy living includes being physically active for at least 60 minutes each day.
- Participation in outdoor recreational/leisure activities with your close family and friends is a fun way to be active.
- Follow the public health alert level guidance to ensure you and your loved ones are safe outdoors.
- Please refer to Tourism, Heritage and Culture for information on Provincial Parks and Attractions and RecreationNB for Responsible Recreation tips.
Outdoor leisure activities can take place as long as Public Health measures are followed. Refer to the COVID-19 Alert Levels page for additional guidance on what is permitted for each alert level: https://www2.gnb.ca/content/gnb/en/corporate/promo/covid-19/alert-levels.html
Alert levels and associated measures are determined by the Government of New Brunswick under the advice and guidance of the Chief Medical Officer of Health.
Risks involved in outdoor activities
It’s important to think about the risks associated with different recreational activities. Take additional public health measures in the following situations:
- activities that involve exertion and when breathing may be heavier;
- places where alcohol is consumed and the ability for people to and adhere to public health measures such as physical distancing and masking may be diminished;
- crowded places where many people are gathered;
- close contact settings and close-range conversations with those outside your immediate household or steady close family and friends;
- close contact with vulnerable individuals such as the elderly or those with underlying health concerns.
Tips for everyone
- Know your public health alert level and how recreation outdoors may be affected; be flexible.
- Follow the guidance posted on signs in campgrounds, beaches, trails and parks.
- Be kind and considerate to others who are using the same outdoor space as you.
- Outdoor recreational spaces are not staffed. Anyone using public facilities must take personal action to avoid close contact with others.
- Keep your distance from others and avoid crowds. Allow for space around you, i.e. on a beach or park.
- Check to make sure you are feeling well; stay home if you are sick.
- Frequently wash your hands.
- Wear a face mask where applicable. Bring an extra mask in case one gets wet.
- Dress appropriately for the weather; wear sunscreen.
- Stay hydrated. Bring your own labelled water bottles and snacks (don’t share).
For sporting events/tournaments that are aligned with a Professional Sport Organization, please refer to the Risk Mitigation for Sports Events document for more information.