Waterloo Public Health announced Thursday that the region’s second and third case of COVID-19, the disease caused by the novel coronavirus, have been confirmed.
The two are among 17 more cases announced across the province, bringing the total number to 59 across Ontario.
Public Health says that a woman in her 60s was on a cruise, which left Puerto Rico on Mar. 1 before visiting St. Thomas, St. Martin, Barbados, Dominique, Grenada, and returning to Puerto Rico on March 7.
The woman, who is a resident of the region, returned to Canada the next day, where it was determined she had symptoms of the disease.
She was driven to Grand River Hospital for testing on March 10.
Public Health says she was experiencing mild respiratory symptoms and has since been released.
In the other instance, a man in his 40s acquired the illness on a trip to Las Vegas.
He developed symptoms after getting home and was driven to Grand River Hospital for testing on Mar. 10.
Dr. Hsiu-Li Wang, the region’s acting medical officer of health, told Global News on Thursday that it is uncertain at the moment how long he was in Waterloo region for before it was discovered he had the disease.
“We’re still in the process of determining more information with respect to this case,” she explained. “But we do know that, you know, he was assessed appropriately at the hospital and he’s currently in self-isolation at home.
“We are following up to get more information on the case,” Wang said. “And if there were contacts here to follow up with them as well.”
These two cases follow on the heels of the first confirmed case which was announced on March 5.
In that instance, a woman was returning from vacation in Italy.
She began to experience the symptoms overseas and immediately drove from Pearson Airport to Grand River Hospital for assessment.
“The first lady is continuing to recover. She’s on the right path,” Wang said.
She said that the area hospitals have already tested more than 90 people for the virus so far.
“The vast majority of cases that go to get assessed and tested are not coronavirus,” Wang explained. “They are the flu or other viruses.”View link »