Crucial point in fight against COVID-19

Windsor-Essex County Health Unit, Windsor, January 16, 2020. Photo by Mark Brown, Blackburn News.

There are 19 new confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the Windsor-Essex region, bringing the total to 44.

Medical Officer of Health Dr. Wajid Ahmed said the increase was expected because of the number of pending test results in the region. There are still 492 people waiting for their test results.

Dr. Ahmed said the number of people who test positive this week will give an indication of whether or not people in the community are doing enough to stop the spread.

“We are at a crucial point in our fight against COVID-19. All the measures that we are putting in place for more than two weeks and if followed properly it should give us a signal whether these measures are working or not,” said Ahmed.

If people are actively following instructions of physical distancing, then there should be a flattening of the curve. However, because of the lag in testing, we are likely to see an increase in cases.

“We will have to be careful how we are interpreting the data. Any case that develops symptoms this week and comes back positive this week that will be an indication of what happened in the last two weeks. But we still have a good number, close to [500] still pending,” said Ahmed.

The lab is now prioritizing testing for people who are experiencing severe symptoms or are at high risk because their test results will help doctors manage their cases.