London and Middlesex health officials reported two deaths, eight new cases and one additional outbreak of COVID-19 in the area on Thursday, while health officials in Lambton County reported a second outbreak and Sarnia’s hospital reported 11 recent staff infections.
Specific details about the two new deaths and eight cases in London-Middlesex were not immediately available.
It brings the total number of cases confirmed in London-Middlesex to 258 and deaths to 14. Two cases were also marked as resolved, bringing that total to 120, the Middlesex-London Health Unit (MLHU) reported.
One death and three new cases were reported on Wednesday.
Forty-three cases — 36 residents and 16 staff — and two deaths in London and Middlesex have been reported at long-term care homes, while nine cases — seven residents and two staff — have been at retirement homes.
Ten of the 13 COVID-19 outbreaks declared in London and Middlesex since the start of the pandemic have been at long-term care and retirement homes.
The latest local outbreak was declared on Wednesday at Horizon Place, a retirement home in west London. Few other details are known.
Only one COVID-19 outbreak in London and Middlesex has been marked as resolved, according to the health unit. The outbreak, declared at Chelsey Park on April 2, was considered resolved as of Tuesday.
Outbreaks remain active at Henley Place, Grandwood Park, Seasons Strathroy, Kensington Village (second floor), Earls Court Village, Meadow Park Care Centre, Sprucedale Care Centre and Mount Hope Centre for Long Term Care (St. Mary’s fifth floor).
Outbreaks have also been declared at St Joseph’s Hospice, on the sixth floor of Zone C at Victoria Hospital (C6-100) and on the fifth floor of University Hospital in inpatient cardiology.
At least 104 such outbreaks have been reported at seniors’ facilities across the province.
On Wednesday, Premier Doug Ford opened the door to systemic changes to the province’s long-term care system and issued an emergency order to prevent long-term care staff from working at multiple homes, in addition to other measures.
Ontario reported 514 new COVID-19 cases on Thursday and 38 more deaths, bringing the provincial total to 8,961 cases, including 423 deaths and nearly 4,200 cases that have been resolved.
The growth in total cases has been relatively low for about a week, and Ontario health officials have said the peak is expected this week.
The number of people in hospital with COVID-19 grew slightly to 807, and while the number of people on ventilators also grew, there are fewer people in intensive care.
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The province says it will expand testing for COVID-19 priority groups, including for residents and staff of homeless shelters and group homes, people living with health-care workers and cancer patients.
Nationally, more than 29,000 confirmed COVID-19 cases had been reported across the country as of early Thursday afternoon, including nearly 9,600 recovered cases and around 1,200 deaths.
Elgin and Oxford
The number of confirmed cases in Elgin and Oxford rose to 41 on Thursday after Southwestern Public Health (SWPH) reported one additional case.
The number of recovered cases and deaths remains at nine and three, respectively.
Details about the new case were not immediately available.
Questions about COVID-19? Here are some things you need to know:
Health officials caution against all international travel. Returning travellers are legally obligated to self-isolate for 14 days, beginning March 26, in case they develop symptoms and to prevent spreading the virus to others. Some provinces and territories have also implemented additional recommendations or enforcement measures to ensure those returning to the area self-isolate.
Symptoms can include fever, cough and difficulty breathing — very similar to a cold or flu. Some people can develop a more severe illness. People most at risk of this include older adults and people with severe chronic medical conditions like heart, lung or kidney disease. If you develop symptoms, contact public health authorities.
To prevent the virus from spreading, experts recommend frequent handwashing and coughing into your sleeve. They also recommend minimizing contact with others, staying home as much as possible and maintaining a distance of two metres from other people if you go out.
For full COVID-19 coverage from Global News, click here.
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