19 new COVID-19 cases, 0 deaths in Middlesex-London

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The number of new COVID-19 cases in the London region slipped back below 20 on Thursday.

The Middlesex London Health Unit reported 19 new COVID-19 cases over the past 24 hours. That is down from 38 on Wednesday and more in line with the downward trend the area saw on Monday and Tuesday when just 17 cases were recorded each day.

Since last March, the city and county have seen a total case count of 5,779.

There were no additional deaths Thursday, leaving the death toll unchanged at 176.

Eighteen more people recovered from the virus to increase the total number of resolved cases to 3,849. There are currently 1,754 known active cases in the region.

An outbreak at Mount Hope Centre for Long-Term Care has been declared over, leaving seven local long-term care and retirement homes in outbreak.

The London Health Sciences Centre announced Thursday that its remaining outbreak, in the adult emergency department at University Hospital, has been resolved.

“I’d like to thank our staff and physicians for their dedication to patient care during extremely challenging circumstances that, for many, required personal sacrifices such as work quarantine,” LHSC Chief Medical Officer Dr. Adam Dukelowsaid in a statement released Thursday afternoon. “As pleased as we are to resolve outbreaks within our facilities, we must also acknowledge and share our deepest condolences with the friends and families of our patients who have lost their lives to COVID-19

The hospital has a total of 16 inpatients with COVID-19 in its care, eight listed in the intensive care unit.

Elsewhere, the Thames Valley District School Board (TVDSB) reported COVID-19 cases at two London area schools. Sir Isaac Brock Public School in London, and Hickson Central Public School in Hickson.

The school board says staff and families were notified, and both the Middlesex-London Health Unit and Southwestern Public Health is working to identify close contacts of the infected individuals.

There are currently four active cases of the virus within TVDSB schools.

The health unit announced on Thursday the Caradoc Community Centre in Mount Brydges will be home to the region’s second COVID-19 vaccination clinic. Work to upgrade the facility’s technological infrastructure and ensure the necessary security measures are in place is underway. The clinic is expected to open its doors later this month.

“This will provide an option for people who are eligible to receive the vaccine now,” said Dr. Chris Mackie, the region’s medical officer of health. “We are also confident that the vaccination clinic in Mount Brydges will not only shorten the time needed to complete the vaccination of eligible populations now but will allow us to plan for vaccination of the general public later this year.”

In Elgin and Oxford, there were 11 new COVID-19 infections recorded Thursday. Southwestern Public Health, the health unit for the two counties, said the latest cases bring the total case count to 2,336. Two more deaths linked to the virus were recorded, increasing the death toll to 61. There are eight area long-term care or retirement homes dealing with cases of the virus. Cases among residents and staff at Caressant Care Retirement Home Woodstock continue to grow. Forty residents and 11 employees have contracted the virus since the outbreak was declared January 21. There is now one death associated with the outbreak.

With resolved cases now sitting at 2,141, there are 134 active cases in the two counties.

Ontario’s daily case count rose above 1,500 Thursday.

There were 1,563 infections logged across the province, up from 1,172 the previous day.

Toronto had the highest number of new cases of any city in the province with 584. Peel recorded 265, and York Region had 132.

Ontario’s total case count since the start of the pandemic now sits at 273,660.

Eighty-eight deaths were reported over the past 24 hours, 36 of which were in long-term care homes. The province’s death toll is now 6,393.

At hospitals in Ontario, there are 1,101 patients with COVID-19. Of those, 323 are in intensive care and 241 are on ventilators.

The number of resolved cases rose to 250,937. There are currently 16,330 active cases of the virus in Ontario.

In the last 24 hour period, 64,467 COVID-19 tests were processed. The province’s positivity rate stands at 2.6 per cent, the lowest it has been since October 24.

To date, the province has administered 355,055 doses of the COVID-19 vaccine.