Sharp increase in COVID-19 cases in Midwestern Ontario Thursday

File photo courtesy of © Can Stock Photo / IvonneWierink

The COVID-19 case count is rising sharply in Midwestern Ontario.

The Grey Bruce Health Unit added another 42 new cases of COVID-19 Thursday, and there are 145 active cases, including 21 variants. There have now been 1,029 confirmed cases in Grey Bruce.  On person is in hospital locally, and three residents are being treated in hospital outside of the region. There have now been five fatalities.

The Grey Bruce Health Unit is declaring a community outbreak in Eastern Grey County. The cases have been identified as a Variant of Concern. A media release says it is a significant event requiring a Grey Bruce wide response as at-risk contacts are from across Grey, Bruce, and Simcoe Counties. Everyone across Grey Bruce is required to observe stay-home orders. A class action order from the Medical Officer of Health, to those identified as cases or at-risk contacts, reinforces the need to follow direction from public health case managers. There are 21 confirmed cases, plus a significant number of probable cases and high-risk contacts related to this outbreak. This outbreak is widespread but is centered in the communities of Thornbury, Clarksburgh and Meaford and spills into neighbouring Simcoe County.

The sources of transmission are identified as individuals not following provincial emergency brake orders by visiting others when symptomatic as well as large social gatherings and ‘bush parties’. The issue is worsened by individuals being untruthful to public health contact tracing and case management inquiries.

Huron Perth Public Health added 23 new cases Thursday, and reported 61 active cases. Two people are now in hospital. 42 variants of concern have been identified.

Wellington Dufferin Guelph Public Health added 102 new cases, including  27 new cases in Wellington County. There are now 112 active cases in Wellington. Ten of them are in Mapleton, four in Minto and nine in Wellington North.