Woman tests positive for coronavirus in Cobourg, Ont., hospital: health officials

A woman has tested positive for COVID-19 after arriving at Northumberland Hills Hospital in Cobourg, Ont. Global News file

A Northumberland County woman in her 60s is the region’s first positive case of COVID-19 after visiting a hospital in Cobourg, Ont., this week.

According to the Haliburton, Kawartha, Pine Ridge District Health Unit, the woman attended Northumberland Hills Hospital in Cobourg on Wednesday after showing symptoms of upper respiratory tract infection.

She had recently travelled to Spain and Portugal and returned back to Canada on Air Transat Flight 337 from Libson, Portugal, to Toronto on March 6.

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The health unit says the woman was discharged home and remains in self-isolation with followup with health officials.

“Health unit nurses have been in contact with the woman and are working with her to identify anyone she may have been in contact with while ill as well as any passengers on that flight who were seated near the woman,” the health unit stated.

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“If anyone who travelled on Air Transat 337 on that date develops symptoms, they are asked to call their local public health unit.”


Dr. Lynn Noseworthy, medical officer of health, says the health unit has been working closely with area hospitals and health care providers in anticipation of its first case of COVID-19.

“Pre-emptive measures were in place for this type of situation,” she said.

“Staff at NHH had the appropriate measures in place to isolate this woman when she came into the emergency department and there was no risk to anyone else at the hospital at that time.”

Both the health unit and hospital are asking anyone who travelled outside Canada to monitor their health for flu-like symptoms for 14 days. If they have returned from China, Iran or Italy, they are asked to self-isolate for 14 days.

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If you have travelled and develop symptoms, options available to you:

  • Contact the health unit at 1-866-888-4577, ext. 5020
  • Contact Telehealth Ontario at 1-866-797-0000.

If symptoms are severe, call 911 and alert the dispatcher to the potential concern regarding COVID-19 so they can be appropriately prepared.

“NHH anticipates that the need for screening will continue to rise,” said Linda Davis, hospital president and CEO.

“As such, NHH will be opening a new COVID-19 assessment centre. We are working toward the opening of this centre within the next 24 hours and will share further details with our community via local media and our website as this work proceeds.

“Patients will notice additional active screening enhancements at our entryways as well as visitor restrictions and we thank everyone in advance for their cooperation and patience as our team works to meet the needs of this rapidly evolving situation.”


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