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11 cases now linked to COVID-19 outbreak at University of Waterloo

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There are now 11 cases connected to a COVID-19 outbreak in a residence at the University of Waterloo, according to Waterloo Public Health.

The outbreak stems from a “cluster” of COVID-19 cases connected to series of gatherings students from both the University of Waterloo and Wilfrid Laurier attended from March 4 through March 7.

Read more: Ontario health minister gets AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine

The outbreak at the University of Waterloo was first reported on March 18, when Waterloo Public Health first announced the existence of the “cluster.”

There is also an outbreak involving three students in a residence at Laurier but that is not all.

“There are now a total of 56 confirmed cases and two probable cases connected to both the original cluster and secondary spread from the original cluster,” Dr. Hsiu-Li Wang, the region’s medical officer of health, said Friday.

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She also expected the spread to continue as the region has now seen secondary spread resulting from the initial cluster of cases.

The two university outbreaks are among 16 active in the region. A new one was reported at Holy Rosary Catholic School as one was declared over at Riverbend Long Term Care in Cambridge.

The region’s vaccination task force says 10.2 per cent of area residents have now received at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine.

On Monday it reported that 74,577 doses have been delivered into arms, a total that is 8,179 higher than the agency announced on Friday.

Waterloo Public Health reported one new COVID-19-related death on Monday, lifting the death toll in the area to 242.

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“The individual was a female in her 80s,” Wang said in an email Monday. “I wish to express my deep sympathy to the family and loved ones of the individual.”

The agency also reported another 39 new positive tests for the coronavirus on Friday, pushing the total number of cases in the area to 11,859.

Read more: Ontario reports nearly 2,100 new COVID-19 cases, 10 deaths

On the flip side, another 39 people have also been cleared of the virus, pushing the total number of resolved cases to 11,309.

The area’s number of active cases falls to 299 including 24 people who are in area hospitals as a result of the virus.

Elsewhere, Ontario reported 2,094 new COVID-19 cases on Monday, the fifth straight day cases are above 2,000, bringing the provincial total to 345,234.

According to Monday’s provincial report, 618 cases were recorded in Toronto, 368 in Peel Region, 277 in York Region, 132 in Ottawa, 104 in Durham Region and 74 in Halton Region.

All other local public health units reported fewer than 70 new cases in the provincial report.

The death toll in the province has risen to 7,337 as 10 more deaths were recorded.

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—With files from Global News’ Gabby Rodrigues

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