Advertisement

COVID-19: Delta variant cases on the rise in Ottawa

Hastings Prince Edward Public Health investigates a COVID-19 exposure at the Sterling Fair mid August. The health unit says those who've attended the fair are considered to be low-risk contacts. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld

The more-transmissible Delta variant is making up a larger percentage of COVID-19 cases in Ottawa as the weeks go by, according to the latest updates from the local public health unit.

Ottawa Public Health added 14 new COVID-19 cases on Tuesday, down from 20 cases added the day before. Tuesdays tend to report lower relative case counts compared with other days of the week.

Ontario similarly saw a drop-off in new cases added on Tuesday.

The number of active cases of COVID-19 in the city dropped slightly to 134 in the latest report.

Click to play video: 'COVID-19: Trudeau says ‘there will be consequences’ for federal workers who are not fully vaccinated' COVID-19: Trudeau says ‘there will be consequences’ for federal workers who are not fully vaccinated
COVID-19: Trudeau says ‘there will be consequences’ for federal workers who are not fully vaccinated – Aug 17, 2021

But OPH’s tracking of COVID-19 variants shows the Delta variant, which experts have said will underpin the fourth wave of the pandemic in Canada, is spreading in Ottawa.

Story continues below advertisement

OPH data shows there have been 112 confirmed cases of the Delta variant in the city to date, compared with 77 such cases this time last week. There have been 58 Delta variant cases added in the city in the past 30 days, according to OPH.

Four people are now in hospital with COVID-19 in Ottawa, one more than the day before, with one person still in the intensive care unit.

Ottawa is meanwhile due for an organizational shift on the COVID-19 vaccination front.

Read more: 1.5M COVID-19 doses administered in Ottawa

The city’s emergency operations centre (EOC), which had led the vaccine rollout locally, will hand over the reins to OPH as of Thursday, according to a memo sent Monday evening.

The note from Anthony Di Monte, head of Ottawa’s emergency services department, and Dr. Vera Etches, medical officer of health, said that with demand for mass vaccination outlets dropping and the local approach shifting towards public health outreach, OPH is better suited to lead the next step of the campaign.

“This transition will streamline operations and allow select city staff to return to their substantive positions and resume other key functions. It also recognizes OPH’s lead role in public health promotion and disease prevention,” the memo read.

Story continues below advertisement

The EOC will also step down from “activated” to “enhanced” operations on Thursday, reducing the resource drain related to the city’s pandemic response. The city will still be able to scale up its operations if the COVID-19 situation worsens, according to Di Monte and Etches.

Click to play video: 'New directive from Ontario will ask employees to share their vaccination status' New directive from Ontario will ask employees to share their vaccination status
New directive from Ontario will ask employees to share their vaccination status – Aug 17, 2021

Sponsored content