The Middlesex-London Health Unit (MLHU) reported 71 COVID-19 cases Tuesday but no deaths.
The latest death was reported Friday, Dec. 10 and involved a woman in her 80s not associated with a long-term care or retirement home. She was fully vaccinated.
In total, there have been 15,490 confirmed cases since the onset of the pandemic, including 475 active cases (an increase of 30), 14,760 recoveries (an increase of 42) and 255 deaths (unchanged).
On Monday, acting medical officer of health Dr. Alex Summers said case counts locally have been rising rapidly with the Omicron variant now the dominant strain in the region.
The rate of active cases continues to climb dramatically among those in the under-12 age group, nearly doubling in a week’s time.
For children 11 and under, there were 129 cases of 200.3 cases per 100,000 population on Tuesday, up from 115 cases or 178.5 per 100,000 population on Monday. Last Tuesday, there were 65 cases or 100.9 cases per 100,000 population.
The cohort with the next highest rate of active cases is the 18-24 age group, with 62 active cases or 117.5 per 100,000 population as of Tuesday.
Information on local variants of concern can be found by visiting the health unit’s summary of COVID-19 cases on the Middlesex-London page and clicking on the “Case Status” tab.
As of Tuesday, London Health Sciences Centre (LHSC) was caring for 14 inpatients with COVID-19, with six in adult critical care or the intensive care unit.
There were five or fewer inpatients with COVID-19 in LHSC’s Children’s Hospital, with five or fewer in pediatric critical care.
Twelve staff members had tested positive for COVID-19.
St. Joseph’s Health Care London is reporting one case involving a health-care worker.
The MLHU is not reporting any outbreaks at long-term care homes, retirement homes or hospitals but there are several outbreaks involving schools:
- Byron Northview Public School, declared Dec. 9
- Delaware Central School, declared Dec. 11
- École élémentaire catholique Saint-Jean-de-Brébeuf, declared Dec. 10
- École élémentaire catholique St-Jeanne-d’Arc, declared Dec. 12
- Mountsfield Public School, declared Dec. 7
- Our Lady of Lourdes Catholic School, declared Dec. 6
- Princess Elizabeth Public School, declared Dec. 9
- Riverside Public School, declared Dec. 6
- Sir Arthur Carty Catholic School, declared Dec. 10
- St. Andre Bessette Secondary School, declared Dec. 9
- St. Jude Catholic School, declared Dec. 7
- St. Marguerite d’Youville School, declared Dec. 3
- St. Mary Choir and Orchestra Catholic School, declared Dec. 5
- St. Nicholas Catholic School, declared Dec. 8
- Strathroy Community Christian School, declared Dec. 13
- West Oaks French Immersion Public School, declared Dec. 4
A previous outbreak at Tecumseh Public School, declared Dec. 3, was listed as over as of Dec. 10.
The following child-care and early years centres have outbreaks:
- Tiny Hoppers Early Learning Centre – Summerside, declared Dec. 12
- Wortley YMCA Child Care Centre, declared Dec. 10
A previous outbreak at Kidzone Day Care Centre, declared Dec. 6, was listed as over as of Dec. 13.
The following post-secondary institutions have outbreaks:
- Fanshawe College – Merlin House Residence, declared Nov. 28
- Western University – Delaware Hall Residence, declared Dec. 10
- Western University – Saugeen-Maitland Hall Residence, declared Nov. 27
The MLHU also reported on Dec. 6 that there was an outbreak at God’s Favourite House, a church on Dearness Drive, connected to the Omicron cluster. The status of that outbreak is unclear.
The following schools have active cases associated with them, according to the MLHU:
- Byron Northview Public School (five cases)
- Clara Brenton Public School (one case)
- Delaware Central School (one case)
- Eagle Heights Public School (two cases)
- École élémentaire catholique Frère André (two cases)
- École élémentaire catholique Saint-Jean-de-Brébeuf (nine cases)
- École élémentaire catholique Saint-Jeanne-d’Arc (three cases)
- École élémentaire La Pommeraie (one case)
- Franklin D. Roosevelt Public School (two cases)
- John Paul II Catholic Secondary School (one case)
- London Christian Academy (two cases)
- Lord Dorchester Secondary School (one case)
- Mother Teresa Catholic Secondary School (one case)
- Northdale Central Public School (one case)
- Northridge Public School (one case)
- Our Lady of Lourdes Catholic School (four cases)
- Riverside Public School (one case)
- Sir Arthur Carty Public School (two cases)
- Sir Arthur Currie Public School (one case)
- St. Andre Bessette Secondary School (12 cases)
- St. Catherine of Siena Elementary School School (two cases)
- St. Jude Catholic School (two cases)
- St. Michael Catholic School (one case)
- St. Nicholas Catholic School (three cases)
- St. Paul catholic School (one case)
- St. Rose of Lima Catholic School (one case)
- St. Thomas More Catholic School (two cases)
- Strathroy Community Christian School (four cases)
- West Oaks French Immersion Public School (three cases)
- Westmount Public School (two cases)
Child-care and early-years centres:
- L’Escale St. Jean de Brébeuf in London, four cases
- London Children’s Connection – Eagle Heights Before and After School, one case
- London Children’s Connection – Westmount Before and After School, one case
- Tiny Hoppers Early Learning Centre – Summerside, two cases
- Wortley YMCA Child Care Centre, two cases
The health unit says at least 410 cases have been reported since the start of the school year involving elementary and secondary schools, as well as child-care and early-years centres.
Vaccinations and testing
The MLHU provided updated vaccination data on Tuesday, covering up to the end of the day, on Dec. 11.
According to the MLHU, 86.3 per cent of residents five and older have had one dose while 81.5 per cent are fully vaccinated as of Dec. 11, up from 85.1 per cent with one dose and 81.1 per cent fully vaccinated as of Dec. 4.
The percentage of residents who’ve had third doses is climbing, with 34.6 per cent of those 80 and older having had a booster shot, along with 30.3 per cent of those 75-79 and 28.5 per cent of those 70-74 having had a third dose.
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As for the vaccination status of cases, the MLHU says unvaccinated individuals have accounted for 37.21 per cent of all cases (352 of 946) and 40.0 per cent of hospitalizations (10 of 25) since Nov. 1.
Of the nine COVID-19-related deaths reported in the last six weeks, four individuals were unvaccinated, four were fully vaccinated and one was partially vaccinated.
On the health unit’s website, residents can find information on pop-up clinics, mass vaccination clinics and pharmacies; guidance for anyone vaccinated outside of the province or country; transportation support for those in need; and more.
Anyone looking to be tested for COVID-19 can find information about the locations of testing sites on the health unit’s website.
The latest COVID-19 test positivity rate in the region was 3.1 per cent for the week of Nov. 28, up from 2.1 per cent for the week of Nov. 21.
The province reported 1,429 cases Tuesday involving 493 people who were unvaccinated, 33 partially vaccinated, 809 fully vaccinated and 94 people with an unknown vaccination status.
According to Tuesday’s report, 239 cases were recorded in Toronto, 128 in York Region, 120 in Ottawa, 103 in Peel Region, 85 in the Kingston area, and 84 in Middlesex-London. All other health units reported fewer than 80 cases in the provincial report.
The numbers may not align with case counts reported by individual health units.
Five more deaths were reported by the province on Tuesday.
Elgin and Oxford
On Tuesday, Southwestern Public Health reported:
- 5,729 total cases (an increase of 23 cases)
- 235 active cases (an increase of 11)
- 5,388 resolved cases (an increase of 13)
- 106 deaths to date (unchanged)
The most recent death was reported Dec. 13 and involved a woman in her 80s from Elgin County.
Further details can be found on SWPH’s COVID-19 dashboard.
SWPH is also reporting a cluster of “approximately ten confirmed or probable cases” involving people experiencing homelessness in St. Thomas.
Most of them are currently being housed at a temporary isolation site at 50 Wellington St., officials said, adding that Elgin County, Ontario Health West, St. Thomas Elgin General Hospital and other community and health-care agencies are providing support services for the individuals as they isolate.
Of the 235 active cases in the region, 122 were in Elgin County (including 69 in St. Thomas and 25 in Aylmer) and 113 were in Oxford County (including 38 in Woodstock and 31 in Tillsonburg).
Fourteen people were hospitalized with COVID-19, with seven in the ICU as of Tuesday.
An outbreak at Caressant Care Bonnie Place in St. Thomas declared Nov. 28 is ongoing. It involves nine resident cases and eight staff cases.
The region’s test positivity rate was 5.3 per cent for the week of Nov. 28, down from 5.9 per cent for the week of Nov. 21.
As of Dec. 12, 75.6 per cent of those aged five and older in the region were fully vaccinated while 80 per cent have had at least one dose.
Information on where and how to get vaccinated can be found on the health unit’s website.
Huron and Perth
On Tuesday, Huron Perth Public Health reported:
- 2,716 total cases (an increase of five)
- 109 active cases (a decrease of six)
- 2,537 recoveries (an increase of 11)
- 70 deaths to date (unchanged)
The most recent death was reported Nov. 29 and involved a community member connected to a workplace outbreak, according to a spokesperson for the health unit.
Among the 109 active cases, 22 were in North Perth and 16 each were in Howick in Perth East. Full case counts by the municipality can be found on the health unit’s dashboard.
There were four people hospitalized with COVID-19 and one active case involving a health-care worker as of Tuesday.
HPPH has eight active outbreaks involving six schools and two workplaces:
- Clinton Public School in Central Huron, declared Dec. 13 and involving one staff and two students
- Elma Township Public School in North Perth declared Nov. 23 and involving 26 students
- Milverton Public School in Perth East declared Dec. 9 and involving three students
- North Perth Westfield ES in North Perth declared Nov. 30 and involving one staff and 11 students
- Perth Care for Kids in Perth East declared Dec. 6 and involving two students
- St. Josephs Catholic Elementary Public School in Stratford declared Dec. 13 and involving two students
No further information was provided about the workplace outbreaks.
As of Dec. 13, 82 per cent of residents aged five and older have had at least one COVID-19 vaccine dose while 78 per cent are fully vaccinated.
The region’s test positivity rate was 2.9 per cent for the week of Nov. 28, down from 3.6 per cent for the week of Nov. 21.
Information on how and where to get a vaccine can be found on the health unit’s website.
Sarnia and Lambton
On Tuesday, Lambton Public Health (LPH) reported:
- 4,532 total cases (an increase of 15)
- 82 active cases (an increase of five)
- 4,372 resolved cases (an increase of 10)
- 78 deaths (unchanged)
The most recent death was reported Friday, Dec. 3.
As of Tuesday, there were 10 COVID-19 patients in the care of Bluewater Health.
LPH is reporting five active outbreaks:
- St. Anne Catholic School, declared Dec. 3 and involving seven cases.
- St. Bartholomew’s Early Childhood Learning Centre, declared Dec. 3 and involving five cases.
- Bright’s Grove Public School, declared Dec. 10 and involving five cases.
- John Knox Christian School, declared Dec. 10 and involving fewer than five cases.
- an unidentified workplace declared Dec. 6, involving two cases.
The test positivity rate for the week of Nov. 28 was 3.9 per cent, up from 2.8 per cent the week before.
Among area residents aged five and older, 79 per cent have had at least one dose while 75 per cent have had two doses. Eight per cent have had a third dose.
Residents can book and re-book COVID-19 vaccine appointments or find information on vaccine availability at pharmacies using the health unit’s registration page. People can also contact the vaccine call centre at 226-254-8222.
Those who are able to get vaccinated on short notice are encouraged to sign up for Lambton Public Health’s daily Vaccine Standby List.
— with files from Global News’ Sawyer Bogdan and Gabby Rodrigues