The Hamilton Spectator
COVID-19 in city’s wastewater increasing
All of the recent large outbreaks in seniors’ homes with 50 cases or more have been declared over
Wastewater samples with COVID-19 detected have been on a sharp rise in the Hamilton area.
Wastewater surveillance reported on by the City of Hamilton shows the metric shot up around Jan. 31, while Public Health Ontario (PHO) reports a spike around Feb. 1 for Central West, which includes Hamilton, Brant, Haldimand, Niagara, the Region of Waterloo, Wellington, Dufferin and Guelph.
However, PHO stated the data should be interpreted with caution as it’s still recent enough to have a higher likelihood of changing.
Overall, COVID and flu are no longer on a downward trend in Hamilton. Instead they are holding steady with moderate COVID spread and low influenza transmission.
“COVID-19 reported cases, hospitalizations and ICU admissions are stable, while test positivity and the number of active outbreaks are decreasing,” stated the city’s weekly update on Wednesday.
All of the recent large outbreaks in seniors’ homes with 50 cases or more have been declared over.
The largest ongoing COVID outbreak Monday was 12 infections at Shalom Village in Westdale since Feb. 7. Macassa Lodge on the central Mountain had an outbreak of gastroenteritis that was up to 36 cases.
Overall, Hamilton had 11 ongoing respiratory and enteric outbreaks in high-risk settings — six of them were COVID and six were in seniors’ homes.
The city has reported one COVID death of a senior aged 80 and older from Feb. 3 to Feb. 10, bringing pandemic fatalities to 672. About twothirds of Hamilton’s COVID deaths have been among this age group.
Demand for COVID vaccines has slowed in recent months, stated a respiratory diseases update to the board of health Monday that was deferred to the meeting in March.
Just over one in five Hamiltonians has had a COVID booster in the last six months.
“Two mobile clinics continue to focus on forward sortation areas at highest risk due to lower vaccine coverage, higher concentration of racialized population and high material deprivation,” said the report.
More than half of COVID vaccines are now being administered by Hamilton pharmacies.
Public health will stop giving out flu shots at COVID vaccine clinics as of Feb. 17, but they will still be available through pharmacies and family doctors.
More than half of COVID vaccines are now being administered by Hamilton pharmacies