Jan. 8: The World Health Organization says a cluster of more than 50 pneumonia cases in the central Chinese city of Wuhan may be due to a newly emerging member of the family of viruses that caused the deadly SARS and MERS outbreaks. On Jan. 9, China Central Television confirms a novel coronavirus, citing laboratory test results.
Jan. 9: A 61-year-old man dies from pneumonia in Wuhan. He tests positive for the novel coronavirus and is considered its first fatality. He was a regular buyer at a seafood market in the city — at this point, coronavirus patients are mainly vendors and purchasers at the seafood market. No clear evidence of human-to-human transmission has been found, according to the Wuhan Health Authority.
Jan. 13: A Chinese woman is quarantined in Thailand, the first new coronavirus case detected outside China.
Jan. 20: China confirms human-to-human transmission of the virus after medical staff in Guangdong Province are infected.
Jan. 21: U.S. health officials report the country’s first novel coronavirus case — a U.S. resident who returned to Washington state after a trip to China.
Jan. 23: The WHO calls the coronavirus situation “an emergency in China” but stops short of declaring a “public health emergency of international concern.” This designation was created after the 2003 SARS outbreak, and five have been declared since 2009: swine flu, polio, Ebola, Zika and Ebola again last summer. China implements sweeping restrictions on travel and public gatherings as the death toll nears 20.
Jan. 24: Europe’s first three novel coronaviruses cases are confirmed in France.
Jan. 25: Authorities announce the first Canadian case — a man who travelled to Toronto from Wuhan. He’s placed in isolation at Sunnybrook Hospital.
Jan. 27: The wife of Canada’s first case becomes the second case of the new coronavirus in Canada. Both she and her husband recover fully in the following weeks.
Jan. 28: B.C. reports its first case, a man in his 40s who travelled to Wuhan on business.
Jan. 30: WHO declares a global health emergency. Inside China, the virus has infected nearly 8,000 and killed at least 170. It has also spawned 98 cases in 18 other countries.
Feb. 2: The Philippines says that a 44-year-old Chinese man had died after contracting the new coronavirus, the first fatality outside of China.
Feb. 5: The Diamond Princess cruise ship carrying 250 Canadians is quarantined off the coast of Japan following a confirmed outbreak of the new coronavirus on-board. After almost two weeks, they’re allowed to disembark and fly back to Canada for another two-week quarantine in Cornwall, or remain under quarantine in Japan. More than 40 Canadian passengers become infected with the virus.
Feb. 7: Two planes carrying 215 Canadian evacuees from the epicentre of the coronavirus outbreak in Wuhan land in Canada. Passengers begin a two-week quarantine at the Trenton air force base.
Feb. 11: The World Health Organization announces COVID-19 as the name of the disease caused by the novel coronavirus, itself now officially called “severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2” or “SARS-CoV-2,” for short.
Feb. 21: In South Korea, the number of cases of coronavirus doubles overnight to 204, almost all  in and around Daegu, the country’s fourth largest city.
An elderly man in northern city of Padua is the first Italian to die of COVID-19. Italy also announced its first cases of local transmission of the coronavirus. An outbreak is flaring in the north of the country.
Iranian officials say the virus has spread to several cities through the country, killing four people
Feb. 25: For the first time, the number of new COVID-19 cases reported outside China exceeds those reported by Beijing. Despite the sudden rise in cases in Italy, Iran and South Korea, WHO chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said the virus can still be contained and does not amount to a pandemic.
Feb. 27: Quebec reports its first presumptive case of COVID-19, a woman from the Montreal region who had recently returned from Iran.
Feb. 29: Washington state health officials report the first patient death from coronavirus in the United States, a man in his 50s with underlying health conditions.
March 4: Prime Minister Justin Trudeau creates a new cabinet committee to deal with the novel coronavirus outbreak as the number of confirmed Canadian cases reaches 33. The WHO now reports that the estimated death rate for people infected with the novel coronavirus is 3.4 per cent, higher than earlier estimates, and several times higher than seasonal influenza.
March 6:Canada‘s chief public health officer advises Canadians to avoid cruises and to self-monitor for symptoms for 14 days after arriving home from travel. COVID-19 cases in Canada surpass 50.
March 9:Canada records its first COVID-19 death, a resident in his 80s at a long-term care facility in North Vancouver.
March 10: A plane lands in Trenton carrying Canadians who were on the Grand Princess cruise ship, forced to idle for days off the coast of Northern California following an on-board coronavirus outbreak.
March 11: Ottawa gets its patient zero, a man in his 40s who recently returned from Austria and works at high-tech giant Ciena. The number of confirmed cases across Canada reaches 116 — 42 of which are in Ontario.
Health Minister Patty Hajdu says COVID-19 could ultimately infect between 30 and 70 per cent of Canadians. The federal Liberal government announces a $1-billion aid package.
The NBA suspends the remainder of its season after a Utah Jazz player tests positive for COVID-19. U.S. President Donald Trump bans travel to the U.S. from most European countries for 30 days. The WHO declares the coronavirus outbreak a global pandemic.
March 12: Ottawa gets its second confirmed case, a women in her 40s who returned from a trip to Italy. Ontario Premier Doug Ford announces publicly funded schools will be closed from March 14 until April 5.
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau reveals he and wife Sophie Grégoire Trudeau are in self-isolation after she began experiencing coronavirus symptoms following a trip to England. Grégoire Trudeau’s test comes back positive, and she becomes Ottawa’s third case of COVID-19. Trudeau has no symptoms and enters 14 days of self-isolation.
Confirmed cases in Ontario reach 59 and the nationwide total hits 145. Shutdowns and cancellations stack up — the NHL, MLB, Juno Awards, Ottawa St. Patrick’s Day parade, March break camps, and many more.
Quebec Premier François Legault cancels all indoor events attracting crowds of more than 250 people.
March 13: Ottawa’s first COVID-19 assessment centre opens at Brewer arena for those with symptoms of the virus and a recent history of international travel or contact with someone with COVID-19. The Queensway Carleton Hospital closes a temporary drive-thru testing facility for COVID–19, after it opened the night before to address a patient backlog.
The government advises against non-essential travel outside Canada, and asks those who return to the country from international travel to self-isolate for 14 days.
The House of Commons and the Senate shut down for five weeks to help prevent parliamentarians from contributing to the spread of COVID–19. Closures continue: national museums, Ottawa’s universities, city pools and arenas. All federal public servants who can work from home are instructed to do so.
The number of confirmed cases nationwide reached 192. In Ontario, the total is up to 79.
March 14: Two new cases are confirmed in Ottawa by the city’s public health unit, bringing to five the number of known COVID-19 cases in the city. Both new patients are self-isolating, but that is all that’s known about their cases.
A woman in her 30s from Eastern Ontario is also diagnosed, and treated at Glengarry Memorial Hospital. She’s believed to have contracted the coronavirus while travelling in the United States.
Gatineau’s first COVID-19 testing centre opens at 135 St-Raymond Blvd., near the Hull hospital, for referrals only. Quebec Premier François Legault asks everyone 70 years of age and older to stay home until further notice.
The number of confirmed Canadian cases reaches 252 — 103 in Ontario.
March 15: The number of confirmed cases in Ottawa doubles to 10 and community transmission is now assumed. Ottawa’s chief medical officer asks residents to stay home and to strictly limit social gatherings of any kind.
In Quebec, Legault orders gathering places such as bars, theatres, gyms and movie theatres to close.
The Ontario tally of confirmed cases reaches 145, of 323 across the country.
March 16: Ottawa adds three new confirmed cases of COVID-19, raising the city’s total to 13. Beyond the fact they’re self-isolating, no further information is provided.
British Columbia reports three additional deaths from the same long-term care home where the first death was reported. Ontario’s total number of confirmed cases reaches 177 — with five resolved — and the national total now exceeds 400.
Trudeau announces that Canada will close its borders to those who are not Canadian citizens or permanent residents, with the exception of U.S. citizens. Canadian travellers will be able to get financial assistance to help them return home. Starting on March 18, only four airports will receive international flights: Toronto, Vancouver, Calgary and Montreal
Ontario’s top medical official is also recommending that all bars and restaurants close, with the exception of those that do takeout and delivery, as well as private schools, daycares, and places of worship.
Premier Doug Ford announces that Ontario will introduce legislation to protect workers’ jobs if they are under quarantine or self-isolating. Ontario’s budget will be delayed, the provincial finance minister says.
Ottawa hospitals announced visitor restrictions and the Ottawa courthouse suspends Superior Court proceedings.
Staffer from citys Constellation Drive building has COVID-19
Political messaging to Ontarians struggles to keep pace with rapid-moving COVID-19
Not everyone requires testing: Public health officials urge people with mild symptoms to self-assess, remain home