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4 new coronavirus cases, 1 recovery in London and Middlesex

Four people have tested positive for the novel coronavirus in London and Middlesex while one person has recovered, local health officials reported Friday.

The update brings the total number of cases in the region to 572, of which 429 have recovered and 57 have died.

Health unit figures show the death involved a woman in her 90s at a local retirement home.

The four new cases are all in London and are not linked to local seniors’ facilities, continuing a trend over the past two weeks that has seen new cases being largely reported outside of long-term care and retirement homes.

Of the 33 cases that have been reported in the region since last Monday, 32 have been community-sourced, according to the health unit.

A chart from MLHU breaking down the number of cases that have been reported in local seniors’ homes and those reported in the community, Jan. 24 to June 10, 2020. Middlesex-London Health Unit

Word of the new cases comes the same day London and Middlesex moves into Stage 2 of Phase 2 of Ontario’s reopening framework, along with some neighbouring counties like Elgin, Huron, Oxford and Perth.

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The second stage includes restaurant patios, hair salons, swimming pools and child-care centres. It’s not yet clear how many child-care centres will be able to implement new pandemic safety measures immediately.

The health unit reported one new case on Thursday involving an EMDC inmate, and reported eight cases and four recoveries on Wednesday, one case and six recoveries on Tuesday, and five cases on Monday.

READ MORE: Stage 2 of Phase 2 — What you can do in the London, Ont., region starting June 12

At least 529 cases have been reported in London, followed by 20 cases in Strathroy-Caradoc, seven in Middlesex Centre, five in North Middlesex, four in Thames Centre and one each in Lucan Biddulph and Southwest Middlesex.

Sixty per cent of local cases, 342, involve women, according to the health unit. The reason can be found by looking at the number of cases that involve health-care workers.

Of the 342 cases that involve women, 20 per cent, or 113, are health-care workers. Overall, women account for 83 per cent of cases involving health-care workers.

Health-care workers in general make up nearly a quarter of all cases.

READ MORE: Port Stanley, other Elgin County, Ont., towns getting ready to open beaches

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The number of hospitalized COVID-19 patients in London remains under five, according to London-Health Sciences Centre (LHSC).

The organization announced Wednesday that it would no longer provide an exact figure of patients being treated at University and Victoria hospitals unless the tally is five or greater.

No COVID-19 cases were being treated within St. Joseph’s Health Care London (SJHC) as of June 8, SJHC’s most recent update.

Hospitalizations account for about 19 per cent of all cases in London and Middlesex. About a quarter of those patients have needed to be admitted to intensive care.

Nearly 90 per cent of hospitalized patients have been over the age of 50, while nearly three-quarters have been over the age of 60, according to health unit data.

Updated staff infection rates at LHSC are also not being released unless the tally rises by five or more, the organization said last week. The last count, released early last week, reported 42 had tested positive during the pandemic.

At SJHC, meantime, at least 18 had tested positive as of June 8.

READ MORE: Coronavirus has now killed more than 8,000 people in Canada

The health unit says outbreaks at two seniors’ facilities remain active — one at Chelsey Park Retirement Community, the other at Kensington Village.

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The outbreak at Chelsey Park, declared May 30, is the most recent outbreak to be reported in the region. The Kensington Village outbreak, meanwhile, has been active since April 3, according to the health unit.

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Outbreaks at long-term care and retirement homes make up 169 of the region’s cases and 37 of its deaths. They also account for at least 19 of the 24 outbreaks that have been reported since the pandemic began.

Long-term care homes have seen 102 cases involving 60 residents and 42 staff, as well as 24 deaths, while retirement homes have seen 67 cases involving 44 residents and 23 staff, and 13 deaths.

The last case to be reported at a seniors’ facility was on June 4, according to the health unit.

READ MORE: Ontario announces ‘cautious’ restart of allowing visitors into long-term care, retirement homes

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Ontario

Provincially, Ontario reported 182 new cases of COVID-19 on Friday, an increase of 0.6 per cent over Thursday and the lowest daily number of cases since late March.

The new number brings the province to a total of 31,726 cases.

It also coincides with a record number of tests completed — 28,335.

The province also reported 11 new deaths Friday for a total of 2,498.

There are 26,187 resolved cases — an additional 302 from the previous day.

READ MORE: Coronavirus — Ontario introduces ‘social circles’ allowing interaction outside of household

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Most Ontario regions outside the Toronto and Hamilton areas will be allowed to reopen more businesses Friday, with some asking GTA residents to stay away.

The limit on social gatherings will increase from five to 10 provincewide, but people must still stay two metres away from anyone outside their own household.

Border regions such as Windsor-Essex, Lambton County and Niagara, as well as Haldimand-Norfolk, which has seen an outbreak among migrant workers, will also not move to Stage 2.

Elgin and Oxford

Three people have tested positive for the novel coronavirus while one person has recovered, Southwestern Public Health (SWPH) reported Friday.

The update brings the total number of cases in the region to 80, of which 70 have recovered. Four people have also died, a tally that has not changed since late April.

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Friday’s update marks the biggest single-day rise in cases since May 22 when five cases were reported, health unit figures show. The region has only reported nine cases since.

READ MORE: Coronavirus — Military deployment to Quebec, Ontario long-term care homes extended to June 26

A health unit spokesperson said one of the new cases was linked to an outbreak at Ontario Plants Propagation, where at least 22 people have tested positive over the last two weeks, including 20 migrant farmworkers.

Health officials reported no new cases, deaths or recoveries on Thursday, and two new cases on Wednesday along with one new recovery.

Six cases remain active in the region, including four in Oxford County — three in East Zorra-Tavistock and one in Tillsonburg — and two in Elgin County, both in St. Thomas.

READ MORE: COVID-19 outbreak declared at retailer in Waterloo Region

No new outbreaks have been reported, keeping that figure at three. The last outbreak to be resolved was on Wednesday at Ingersoll’s Secord Trails.

The number of tests conducted by the health unit stood at 6,539 as of Friday, with 541 tests awaiting results.

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The test per cent positivity rate for Elgin and Oxford remains at 1.3 per cent.

Huron and Perth

No new cases, deaths or recoveries were reported by officials with Huron Perth Public Health (HPPH) on Thursday.

An update is expected Friday afternoon.

The total number of cases remains unchanged at 55, of which 47 have recovered and five have died.

Health officials reported one recovery on Wednesday in Stratford, and no new cases, deaths or recoveries on Tuesday.

READ MORE: Innisfil, Ont., beaches still closed, June 20 targeted for reopening

Three cases remained active in the region, including two in St. Marys and one in Ashfield-Colborne-Wawanosh in Huron County.

In total, 26 cases have been reported in Stratford, while 13 cases have been reported in Huron County and 11 in Perth County.

St. Mary’s has seen four cases and one death.

Four deaths have also been reported in Stratford, linked to an outbreak that ended more than a month ago at Greenwood Court that saw six residents and 10 staff test positive.

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A total of seven outbreaks have been declared, all of which have been resolved.

The health unit said 4,246 tests had been administered in Huron and Perth as of Thursday. Of those, 93 were awaiting test results.

Sarnia and Lambton

Three people have tested positive for the novel coronavirus, officials with Lambton Public Health (LPH) reported late Thursday.

It brings the total number of confirmed cases to 274. The number of recoveries and deaths, 233 and 25, respectively, remain unchanged. Sixteen cases remain active.

READ MORE: Peterborough child care operators refuse to reopen until province reinstates funding

Health unit figures show the new cases aren’t associated with an active outbreak at Vision Nursing Home, a long-term care facility in Sarnia that has had an ongoing outbreak since April 23.

Twenty-eight staff members and 26 residents at the home have tested positive during the outbreak. Ten residents have since died. It’s not clear how many cases are active.

Health officials reported one new case late Wednesday and said it involved a staff member at the facility. Two cases on Sunday were also linked to Vision Nursing Home.

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The outbreak is the only active outbreak in the county and is the worst that has been seen.

It and Landmark Village, which had an outbreak from March 26 until May 6, account for 94 of the 100 outbreak-related cases that have been reported in Lambton.

The outbreak at Landmark Village saw 30 residents test positive, six dies, and 10 staff members infected.

READ MORE: China sees first locally spread case of novel coronavirus in weeks

Forty per cent of the county’s cases are outbreak-related, LPH says.

At Bluewater Health, which has taken in active resident cases from Vision, 11 COVID-19 patients were being treated on Friday along with 37 who were suspected positive or who were awaiting tests — an increase of nine from Thursday.

As of late Thursday, LPH said 8,899 test results had been received by health officials so far. The percentage of tests that come back positive stands at 3.1 per cent.

Being a border region, Lambton County is among the areas that are not being allowed to move to Stage 2 of the province’s reopening framework.

— With files from the Canadian Press

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