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Hamilton, Ont., reports 4 new COVID-19 cases, outbreak over at General Hospital

A health-care worker prepares to swab a man at a walk-in COVID-19 test clinic in Montreal on Sunday, May 10, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Graham Hughes

Health officials in Hamilton, Ont., reported four new cases of COVID-19 on Thursday, putting the city’s total number of cases up to 751 since the pandemic began.

There are now 744 confirmed novel coronavirus cases, with another seven probable infections.

No new deaths were reported. The city has 42 total deaths connected to COVID-19.

READ MORE: 203 new coronavirus cases, 12 deaths in Ontario as total cases reach 31,544

Public health officials declared an outbreak at the COVID-19 unit at Hamilton General Hospital over on Wednesday night. In total, 10 health-care workers associated with the 8 West unit have tested positive.

The city now has no current institutional outbreaks.

In all, 37 patients with COVID-19 remain in hospitals: Hamilton Health Sciences has 18 while St. Joseph’s hospitals have 19.

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To date, 595 of the city’s 751 known COVID-19 cases — or 79 per cent — have been resolved.

Public health officials said cases among people aged 20 to 29 are still a concern, with 43 per cent of cases over the last 10 days being from that demographic.

On Thursday, the city said it had begun planning a “gradual” reopening of 234 child-care centres across the region.

In a release, officials said all centres will be required to follow strict health protocols and meet additional requirements to safely reopen as per the province’s announcement on Tuesday.

READ MORE: Screening, reduced spaces part of Hamilton’s ‘gradual’ reopening of child-care centres

The 94 organizations operating child-care facilities across the city will need to bring in enhanced cleaning, mandatory screening of staff and children, limitations on visitors, and an updated COVID-19 response plan.

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The number of available child-care spaces — currently at 14,000 — will be “greatly reduced” to meet new provincial protocols, the city said.

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Niagara Region reports 3 new COVID-19 cases

Niagara public health officials reported three new coronavirus cases on Thursday. The region has 722 total cases with 83 of them active.

St Catharines remains the region’s coronavirus hot spot, with five cases per 10,000 people.

The region reported no new deaths, leaving the total at 61, with 50 tied to long-term care or retirement homes.

READ MORE: Ontario reopening Stage 2: Groups of 10 allowed, places of worship to reopen amid coronavirus pandemic

The region has two institutional outbreaks at one long-term-care home (Garden City Manor in St. Catharines, and one retirement home (Albright Manor in Lincoln).

Eighty per cent of Niagara’s cases have been resolved.

Haldimand-Norfolk reports 9 new COVID-19 cases 

Haldimand-Norfolk reported nine new COVID-19 cases on Thursday, putting the region’s overall total to 406 since the pandemic began.

Officials said 140 patients have since recovered, while 31 have died.

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On Thursday, health officials revealed their preparations for reopening child-care services as per the province’s announcement on Tuesday. Its social services and housing team is working with the area’s licenced providers.

Norfolk Mayor and chair of the board of health Kristal Chopp said in a statement that the reopening of childcare facilities is a “critically important step” for a gradual return to some level of normalcy.

Meanwhile, the region’s health unit released another statement on Thursday to reaffirm social-distancing protocols, particularly with premises that serve food, as the counties remain in the first stage of the province’s reopening plan prohibiting the opening of dining establishments.

READ MORE: Premier Doug Ford, health minister test negative for coronavirus

“That means food premises in the area may not open except for takeout and/or delivery, and personal-service settings must remain closed,” the health unit said in a release.

Halton region reports 7 new COVID-19 cases, outbreak at long-term care home in Burlington

Halton Region reported seven new cases of COVID-19 on Thursday. The region now has 761 cases, including 691 confirmed positive cases and 70 probable.

West Milton is the region’s hot spot, with more than 25 cases per 10,000 people, officials said. North Central Oakville follows close behind with 24.

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The region has 25 deaths tied to COVID-19 with 11 from a confirmed outbreak at an institution.

About 640 cases, or more than 84 per cent, have been resolved.

The region declared a new institutional outbreak that started Tuesday night at CAMA Woodlands Long-term Care Home in Burlington. At least one staff member has tested positive.

READ MORE: Class action to be launched against Ontario alleging negligence in long-term care oversight

Seventy-eight cases are connected to residents or patients in an institution.

Brant County reports one new COVID-19 case

Brant County’s health unit reported one new COVID-19 case on Thursday. The region has 117 total confirmed cases.

The county still has four deaths and 106 total resolved cases.

There are no outbreaks, and seven people are in hospital with the virus.

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Questions about COVID-19? Here are some things you need to know:

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. In situations where you can’t keep a safe distance from others, public health officials recommend the use of a non-medical face mask or covering to prevent spreading the respiratory droplets that can carry the virus.

For full COVID-19 coverage from Global News, click here.