276 new COVID-19 cases in London-area over past three days

A health-care worker performs a nasal swab on a woman. File photo courtesy of © Can Stock Photo / dolgachov.

The Middlesex London Health Unit is reporting 276 new COVID-19 cases and one death since Saturday.

The health unit released three days worth of data on Tuesday after taking a two day Easter break from updating its COVID-19 dashboard. The 276 infections break down into 79 confirmed cases on Tuesday, 73 on Monday, and 114 on Sunday.

The region’s total number of cases since the start of the pandemic is now 7,699.

There was one additional death since Saturday to bring the death toll to 190. The latest death was reportedly a woman in her 90s who was not associated with a long-term care or retirement home.

The number of confirmed cases involving variants rose to nine with one additional variant of concern identified as the B.1.1.7 variant from the U.K. Health officials confirmed there are 414 cases that have screened variant positive for a mutation.

There were 124 more recoveries over the past three days for a total of 6,626 resolved cases. Currently, there are 883 active cases in London and Middlesex County.

Outbreaks remain at two local long-term care facilities and five schools including Ekcoe Central, Holy Rosary Catholic, Northridge Public, Riverbend Academy, and Sir Frederick Banting Secondary. With the exception of Holy Rosary Catholic, all of the schools remain open.

Additionally, the Thames Valley district school board reported COVID-19 cases at three more schools. Bonaventure public school and Medway secondary in London and Parkside Collegiate in St. Thomas all confirmed cases on Tuesday.

Western University has outbreaks at six of its residences – Essex Hall, Delaware Hall, Elgin Hall, Medway-Sydenham Hall, Ontario Hall, and Saugeen-Maitland Hall. The post secondary institution has encouraged students who live on campus to move out of residence early in order to better combat the spread.

The London Health Sciences Centre (LHSC) has 25 patients with COVID-19 in its care, 12 of whom are listed in the intensive care unit. According to LHSC Chief of the Department of Emergency Medicine Dr. Adam Dukelow, seven of the 12 ICU patients are from outside the Greater Toronto Area and Thunder Bay. The LHSC is also reporting ten staffers have tested positive for the virus.

As of Sunday, 93,031 doses of the COVID-19 vaccine have been administered in the region. The health units for Middlesex London and Elgin-Oxford expanded eligibility for the shot to people aged 65 and older on Tuesday. Appointments can be booked online at www.covidvaccinelm.ca or by phone at 226-289-3560 for those unable to access the web booking site.

In Elgin and Oxford counties, there were over a dozen new infections on Tuesday. Southwestern Public Health, the health unit for the region, said there were 13 new COVID-19 cases over the past 24 hours to bring the total caseload since last March to 2,911. The death toll is unchanged at 69 with no new COVID-19 deaths since last Monday. Resolved cases are up to 2,722 with 120 known active cases in the two counties remaining. There is one long-term care home outbreak at Caressant Care Bonnie Place in St. Thomas, where one worker and one resident have contracted the virus. Roughly 8.4 per cent of area residents have had one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine, while 1.9 per cent have received both doses.

Ontario’s daily case count has jumped back above 3,000.

Public health officials logged 3,065 new infections across the province on Tuesday. That’s up slightly from 2,938 on Monday. It is a substantial increase from this time last week when the daily case count was 2,207.

Toronto had the province’s highest daily number of cases with 955, that was followed by Peel with 561, York Region with 320, Ottawa with 165, and Niagara with 132.

Ontario has identified 1,068 more cases as variants of concern for a total of 27,193. Further testing has confirmed 2,165 cases of the variant first discovered in the U.K., known as B.1.1.7. There has been a total of 71 cases of the South Africa, known as B.1.351, and 106 cases of the variant first found in Brazil, known as P.1.

Ontario total case count since the start of the pandemic now stands at 367,602.

There were eight additional deaths reported over the past 24 hours. The provincial death toll is now 7,458.

At hospitals in Ontario, the number of COVID-19 positive patients has risen to 1,161. Of those, a record 510 are in intensive care and 310 are on ventilators.

The number of resolved cases rose to 333,576. There are currently 26,568 active cases of the virus in Ontario.

In the last 24 hour period, 37,541 COVID -19 tests were processed. That is up from 36,600 the previous day and brings the province positivity rate to 8.9 per cent.

To date, the province has administered 2,621,839 doses of the COVID-19 vaccine, with more than 323,000 people having received both shots required to be fully inoculated.