London-Middlesex back to triple-digit COVID-19 cases

A woman wearing a face covering shops for groceries. File photo courtesy of © Can Stock Photo / Kzenon

Following a one-day reprieve, the London region went back to triple-digit daily COVID-19 cases on Wednesday.

The Middlesex London Health Unit reported 120 new infections and two additional deaths over the past 24 hours. The climb back above the 100 mark comes after 79 cases were reported on Tuesday. There have now been seven days so far this year when daily cases were in the triple digits.

The region’s total case count stands at 4,710.

Public health officials said the two latest deaths were among a man in his 80s in long-term care and a woman in her 90s who did not reside in an assisted living facility. Since January 1, there have been 31 COVID-19 related deaths in the area, with at least one reported every day. The death toll is 134 since the pandemic began.

A new outbreak was declared on the geriatric behavioral unit at Victoria Hospital. That is in addition to the outbreak on the hospital’s B41 antenatal unit. On both units, there have been fewer than five patients and staff infected and there are no deaths linked to either outbreak. The London Health Sciences Centre currently has 37 inpatients with COVID-19, 15 of whom are in intensive care.

There are 14 local long-term care and retirement homes and one secondary school (Lord Dorchester) dealing with outbreaks. The health unit declared the outbreak at Covenant Christian School over on Tuesday.

There were 57 more recoveries reported in the city and county to bring the total number of resolved cases to 3,212.

Currently, there are 1,364 active COVID-19 cases in the region.

Southwestern Public Health, the health unit for Elgin and Oxford counties, recorded 40 new infections and two deaths on Wednesday. The health unit said the latest numbers bring its total case count to 1,865 and its death toll to 37. There are 24 local long-term care and retirement homes with active COVID-19 cases. The worst outbreak continues to be at Maple Manor in Tillsonburg where 80 residents and 48 staff members have tested positive. There are 11 deaths linked to the outbreak. An ongoing outbreak has also infected 40 residents and 33 employees at PeopleCare Tavistock. Five deaths are connected to that outbreak.

Recoveries in the two counties went up to 1,466, leaving 362 active cases.

Provincially, the number of new COVID-19 cases was below 3,000 for a second day in a row.

Public health officials logged 2,961 infections Wednesday, up from 2,903 reported the previous day. The positivity rate remains high at 6 per cent with just over 50,000 tests processed over the last 24 hours period.

Areas of the province with the highest number of new cases are Toronto with 738, Peel with 536, Windsor-essex with 245, York Region with 219, and Hamilton with 171.

The total number of cases in the province has risen to 224,984.

Seventy-four deaths linked to the virus across the province were recorded on Wednesday. Thirty-six of those deaths were among long-term care home residents and one was a staff member of a long-term care home. Ontario’s death toll is now 5,127.

The number of resolved cases rose to 190,221 with 3,392 additional recoveries since Tuesday.

According to the province’s daily report, the number of COVID-19 infected patients in Ontario hospitals has risen to 1,674. Of those in hospital, 385 are the intensive care unit and 276 are on ventilators.

A stay-at-home order goes into effect in Ontario as of 12:01 a.m. on Thursday. Under the order, people may only leave their homes for essential purposes such as  grocery shopping, medical appointments, and exercise.

As of 8 p.m. Tuesday, the province has administered 144,784 doses of the COVID-19 vaccine.