The Haliburton, Kawartha, Pine Ridge District Health Unit reported a death and 13 new cases of COVID-19 over the past 48 hours but overall active cases continue to decline, according to data released on Wednesday afternoon.
The health unit’s COVID-19 dashboard — which going forward will only be updated each Wednesday — reported the following data for the health unit’s jurisdiction of the City of Kawartha Lakes, Northumberland County and Haliburton County as of 2:05 p.m. Wednesday:
Active lab-confirmed cases: 39 — down from 57 reported on Monday and 71 reported on Friday. The 13 new cases include five in the City of Kawartha Lakes, eight in Northumberland County and none in Haliburton County. Among the 39 active cases, there are 20 in the City of Kawartha Lakes (three less), 19 in Northumberland County (down 13) and none in Haliburton County (two less).
The province and health unit note that due to restrictions in provincial testing, the number of active cases is an “underestimate” of actual community spread.
Medical officer of health Dr. Natalie Bocking said during Wednesday’s media briefing that the health unit is receiving 10 to 20 new lab-confirmed cases per day, down from up 100 per day at the peak of the Omicron wave. She said waste water surveillance shows “a significant decrease” with pre-Omicron levels in Lindsay and reduced level in Cobourg but “not quite at its lowest point” with a slight increase.
“I anticipate — because Omicron is so infectious — it’s not going to disappear completely,” said Bocking.
“We are likely to see an ongoing trickle of cases and little bumps in our waste water surveillance data but hopefully now we are on a period of time where we are not seeing a significant increase or another surge or wave. Our hope and outlook is we wouldn’t see one until the fall unless we see a new variant emerge.”
Deaths: 108 lab-confirmed deaths and 13 probable deaths since the pandemic was declared — a new death was reported in the City of Kawartha Lakes, the first death reported by the health since May 18. There have been 45 lab-confirmed deaths in the health unit’s jurisdiction in 2022 to date: 26 in the City of Kawartha Lakes, 17 in Northumberland County and two in Haliburton County.
From March 2020 to December 2021, there were 63 lab-confirmed deaths and 13 probable deaths reported. On March 11, 2022, four cases previously reported in the City of Kawartha Lakes were removed from the health unit’s database to align with changes in provincial reporting.
Hospitalized cases: 140 reported so far in 2022 — one new case since May 30 — with 66 in the City of Kawartha Lakes (one more), 66 in Northumberland County (unchanged) and eight in Haliburton County (unchanged). There have been 27 intensive care unit admissions in 2022. Ross Memorial Hospital in Lindsay reported one inpatient as of noon Wednesday.
COVID-19 was identified as the primary cause of admission in the case. The health unit notes there are “slight delays” in reporting case admittance, ICU admission and hospital discharges.
Cumulative cases: 5,570 lab-confirmed cases in 2022 and 9,346 total cases since the pandemic was first declared. Kawartha Lakes has led 2022 totals with 2,762 cases. In Northumberland County, Cobourg leads municipalities with 646 cases this year.
Test positivity rate: 7.7 per cent — at its peak, the health unit reported 23 per cent. The current Ontario average is 8 to 9 per cent, Bocking said.
Vaccination: The latest vaccination data was released on Monday and can be found in this article. The health unit continues to host vaccine clinics across its jurisdiction. Visit the health unit’s website for an active list.
The health unit only reports outbreaks at “high-risk settings.” A new outbreak was declared Wednesday morning at Extendicare Haliburton long-term care home in Haliburton.
Other active outbreaks as of Wednesday afternoon:
- Extendicare Port Hope: Declared May 8 and is facility-wide.
- Landmark Assisted Living Retirement Home in Cobourg: Declared May 30.
Since 2022 there have been 77 outbreaks at high-risk settings.