22 new COVID-19 cases, no deaths reported in Middlesex London

A woman is given a nasal swab test for COVID-19. File photo courtesy of © Can Stock Photo / dolgachov

The number of new COVID-19 cases in the London region climbed back into double-digits on Wednesday.

The Middlesex London Health Unit reported 22 new infections over the past 24 hours. That is up from eight on Tuesday and three on Monday. It is the first time since Friday the daily case count has been above 20.

Since the pandemic began, there has been a total of 12,383 cases in the city and county.

The local death toll is unchanged at 221. There has not been a COVID-19 related death reported since Saturday.

Hospitalizations in the area have dropped by four to 16 COVID-19 patients admitted to the London Health Sciences Centre. There are seven COVID-19 patients listed in intensive care, a decrease of two since Tuesday. COVID-19 patients transferred to the LHSC from outside of the region include fewer than five in acute care beds and fewer than five in intensive care. There are currently no staff who have tested positive for the virus.

There were 24 more cases involving variants of concern in London and Middlesex County, for a total of 3,180. Of those, 3,092 have been identified as the B.1.1.7 (Alpha) strain from the U.K., 83 are the P.1. (Gamma) variant from Brazil, three are the B.1.617 (Delta) strain from India, and there are two cases of the B.1.351 (Beta) variant from South Africa. The health unit also noted a total of 342 cases have tested positive for a mutation.

Currently, there are no outbreaks at seniors’ facilities, schools, or daycare centres in the area.

Resolved cases are up by 12 for a total of 12,059. Active cases in the region rose to 103, after falling below 100 for the first time in three months on Tuesday.

The health unit continues to get hundreds of doses of the vaccine into arms each day. On Thursday, it will host a walk-in vaccination clinic at its offices at Citi Plaza from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. The one-day clinic aims to get first doses to those who are homeless, under-housed, or who can’t make it to any of the region’s four mass inoculation sites.

Southwestern Public Health recorded four new COVID-19 cases on Wednesday. The latest cases puts Elgin and Oxford counties’ total up to 3,820. There were no additional COVID-19 related deaths reported in the region, leaving the death toll at 83. Resolved cases rose to 3,718. There are now 19 active cases locally.

Ontario marked its second straight day below 500 new COVID-19 cases on Wednesday.

A total of 411 new infections were confirmed over the past 24 hours, down from Tuesday’s 469 cases. It is the province’s lowest single-day case count since 435 infections were logged on September 26 of last year. The continued decline of new cases comes just two days before Ontario enters Stage 1 of its reopening plan. On Friday, outdoor gatherings limits will be increased to ten people, patio dining at restaurants and pubs can resume, and non-essential retail will be able to reopen.

Regions with the highest number of new infections over the past 24 hours continue to be Toronto with 97 and Peel with 35. That is followed by Waterloo with 26, York Region with 26, and Hamilton with 25.

Ontario’s total case count since the start of the pandemic now sits at 537,487.

According to public health officials, there were 33 additional deaths related to the virus on Wednesday. The official death toll now stands at 8,920.

The daily epidemiologic summary indicates Ontario found 902 more lab confirmed cases over the past 24 hours of the B.1.1.7. variant. There are now a total of 134,608 cases of that strain. Another 64 cases of the P.1. variant has been confirmed for a total of 4,073 and there were 28 more cases of the B.1.351 variant for a total of 1,125 in Ontario.

Hospitalizations in the province have gone down to 571 COVID-19 positive patients admitted. That’s a decrease of 50 patients from the previous day. Of those in hospital, there are 390 in intensive care and 314 on ventilators.

Resolved cases across the province are up to 521,743. That leaves 6,824 known active cases of the virus in Ontario, down from 10,664 a week ago.

In the last 24 hour period, 30,456 COVID-19 tests were processed, up from 17,579 on Tuesday. Ontario’s positivity rate has dropped to 2 per cent, its lowest level since late February.

The province has administered 10,445,119 doses of the COVID-19 vaccine as of Tuesday night. Just over 1.2 million people in Ontario have received their second dose of the vaccine and are considered fully inoculated.