1 death, 4 new coronavirus cases, say London-Middlesex health officials

One person has died and four others have tested positive for the novel coronavirus in London and Middlesex, health unit officials announced on Wednesday.

The update brings the total number of confirmed cases in the region to 509, of which 52 have now died. At least 367 people have recovered, around 72 per cent of cases, a figure that remained unchanged.

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The death and two of the cases are associated with long-term care homes in the region, health unit figures show. The deceased has been identified only as a woman in her 80s, while the two cases involved long-term care home residents.

All four cases were reported in London, which has now seen 472 confirmed cases — nearly 93 per cent of all cases in the region.

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A chart from the MLHU showing the number of cases in London and Middlesex by reported date from Jan. 24 to May 26, 2020. Middlesex-London Health Unit

Elsewhere, 20 cases have been reported in Strathroy-Caradoc, along with seven in Middlesex Centre, four each in North Middlesex and Thames Centre and one each in Lucan Biddulph and Southwest Middlesex.

The health unit does not provide a breakdown of recovered cases by location, so it’s not clear how many cases remain active in each area.

Health officials reported one death and four new cases on Tuesday. The death and one of the cases were linked to retirement homes.

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As of Wednesday, long-term care and retirement homes account for 167 of the region’s 505 cases, 32 of its 51 deaths, and at least 18 of the 23 local outbreaks that have been declared.

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Long-term care homes have seen a total of 101 cases, involving 60 residents and 41 staff members, while retirement homes have seen 66 cases, involving 43 residents and 23 staff.

Twenty-two deaths have been recorded at long-term care homes and 10 at retirement homes.

Click to play video: 'Coronavirus outbreak: Nothing is off the table in solving long-term care home crisis, Trudeau says' Coronavirus outbreak: Nothing is off the table in solving long-term care home crisis, Trudeau says
Coronavirus outbreak: Nothing is off the table in solving long-term care home crisis, Trudeau says – May 27, 2020

Eight outbreaks remain active in London and Middlesex, all of them at seniors’ facilities, including Chesley Park, Henley Place, Country Terrace, Mount Hope Centre for Long-Term Care (St. Mary’s fifth floor), Waverly Mansion, Meadow Park Care Centre and Kensington Village (LTCH) and Sisters of St. Joseph.

Across the province, at least 434 outbreaks have been declared at long-term care homes and retirement homes since mid-January, of which 288 remain active, according to Public Health Ontario.

Premier Doug Ford is set to make an announcement related to long-term care on Wednesday, a day after a military report revealed allegations about five homes in the GTA that the premier has called “horrific.”

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Health unit figures show that about 80 per cent of cases in London and Middlesex, 408, have not involved hospitalizations. Of the 20 per cent that have, 29, or 5.7 per cent of total cases, have involved patients being admitted to intensive care.

A majority of hospitalized cases, 73, involve patients over the age of 60, with 58 cases involving patients over 70.

London Health Sciences Centre (LHSC) reported Wednesday that 13 people were being treated for COVID-19 at University and Victoria hospitals as of midnight, a decrease of three from the organization’s previous update on Monday.

It’s not clear how many, if any, are in intensive care, as LHSC has stopped releasing that information over concerns about patient privacy.

At LHSC itself, at least 42 of the organization’s staff have tested positive for the novel coronavirus during the pandemic, an increase of one from Monday. It’s not clear how many cases remain active or where the staff members worked.

According to Public Health Ontario, there have been 84 declared outbreaks at hospitals across the province, of which 50 are active. Three outbreaks have been reported in London — two at Victoria Hospital and one at University Hospital.

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Provincially, Ontario reported 292 new cases of COVID-19 on Wednesday, and 32 new deaths, marking the second straight day of fewer than 300 new cases.

The update follows several consecutive days of more than 400 cases each.

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It brings the provincial total to 26,483, an increase of 1.1 per cent over the previous day. The total includes 2,155 deaths and 20,372 resolved cases.

The number of tests reported on Wednesday jumped to 15,133, up from just 9,875 the previous day.

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The Ford government on Wednesday extended its COVID-19 emergency orders until June 9, meaning Ontarians will have to wait a bit longer to dine in bars and restaurants, gather in groups larger than five, or use playground equipment.

The orders were last extended on May 19 and were set to expire May 29. They first came into effect on March 17.

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The orders include the closure of child-care centres, libraries except for pickup and delivery, theatres, and bars and restaurants except to provide takeout or delivery.

It also means that Ontarians looking to beat the heat at public pools and splash pads are out of luck until at least June 9.

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Elgin and Oxford

No new cases or deaths have been reported, while two people have recovered, officials with Southwestern Public Health (SWPH) reported Wednesday.

The number of confirmed cases in the region remains unchanged at 73, of which now 60 have recovered, or about 82 per cent. Four people have died, a tally that has remained unchanged since April 22.

Heath unit figures show the two recovered cases were reported in East Zorra-Tavistock and in Malahide.

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Health officials reported one new case and one recovery on Tuesday, and no new cases, deaths or recoveries on Monday.

The new case Tuesday involved a staff member at Secord Trails, a long-term care facility in Ingersoll. Eight staff members at the home have tested positive as a result of the outbreak, declared on May 18.

Two other outbreaks have been declared in the region at Beattie Manor and Caressant Care Bonnie Place, involving one resident and one staff member, respectively. Both have since resolved.

A chart from SWPH showing the per cent positivity rate of coronavirus tests in the region, April 3 to May 27, 2020. Southwestern Public Health

Nine cases remain active in Elgin and Oxford counties combined, with eight cases in Oxford County, including four in Ingersoll, and two each in Tillsonburg and Woodstock.

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One case remains in St. Thomas.

As of Wednesday, 4,293 tests had been administered in Elgin and Oxford counties. Of those, 292 were awaiting results.

The region’s test per cent positivity stands at 1.8 per cent, down from 1.9 the day before.

Huron and Perth

No new cases, deaths or recoveries were reported by Huron Perth Public Health on Tuesday.

An update is expected Wednesday afternoon.

Health officials also reported no new cases, deaths or recoveries on Monday.

Only two cases are active in the region. One was reported on Sunday in North Perth, the other in Goderich on Thursday involving a resident at a long-term care facility.

Maitland Manor has since declared an outbreak, becoming the region’s seventh outbreak. It’s currently the only one active.

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Nearly half of all cases reported in Huron and Perth counties, 23, are linked to the seven outbreaks, which have seen a total of 14 staff and eight resident cases, and four deaths.

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The deaths were associated with a severe, since-resolved outbreak at Greenwood Court in Stratford, which saw six residents and 10 staff members infected.

Twenty-five cases have been reported in Stratford, 13 have been reported in Huron County and 10 have been reported in Perth County. St. Marys has seen two cases. One person has died and one has recovered.

The health unit said 2,719 tests had been administered in Huron and Perth as of Tuesday. Of those, 101 were awaiting test results.

Sarnia and Lambton

Three people have tested positive for the novel coronavirus, while five others have recovered, officials with Lambton Public Health reported late Tuesday night.

The update brings the total number of cases confirmed in the region to 254, of which 185 have recovered, or about 73 per cent of cases. Twenty-one people have died, a figure that remained unchanged.

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One of the cases involves a resident at Vision Nursing Home, a long-term care facility in Sarnia that has had an active outbreak since April 23. Twenty-three residents have tested positive, six have died and 20 staff members have also been infected at the home.

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It’s currently the hardest-hit seniors’ home in the county when it comes to the coronavirus. The outbreak at Landmark Village, active from March 26 to May 6, saw 30 resident cases, six resident deaths and 10 staff cases.

Bluewater Health, which itself has seen 15 hospital staff test positive — eight of whom have recovered — has deployed health-care workers to the home to help fight the outbreak.

A chart from Lambton Public Health showing the number of confirmed cases in the county by reported date, March 24 to May 26, 2020. Lambton Public Health

Health officials reported three new cases and three recoveries Monday night. One of the cases was linked to Vision Nursing Home, while the other involved a newly declared outbreak at Lambton Meadowview Villa, a long-term care home in Petrolia.

The outbreak at Lambton Meadowview is the second to be seen at the facility following an outbreak that was active from April 15 to April 23. In both outbreaks, one staff member tested positive.

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Two other outbreaks also remain active in the region, both in Sarnia. Two residents have tested positive at Village on the St. Clair, while one resident has tested positive at Marshall Gowland Manor.

Three outbreaks are listed as resolved, including the first outbreak at Lambton Meadowview, the outbreak at Landmark Village and one at Sumac Lodge.

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Bluewater Health reported Tuesday that it was treating four COVID-19 patients in the hospital, in addition to 21 who were suspected positive or were waiting for results.

As of late Tuesday, 5,871 test results had been received by the county. The number of pending tests is not released.

— With files from The Canadian Press

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