30% of locals vaccinated
The local medical officer of health focused on the positive Thursday as Windsor-essex surpassed 15,000 total COVID -19 infections.
“We are looking at the silver lining at this time — we are continuing to roll out the vaccine in the region and we are covering a large number of people,” said Dr. Wajid Ahmed.
More than 30 per cent of Windsor-essex residents (130,897) have received at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine so far, with more needles going into arms each day. However, vaccination alone is not the pandemic's solution, he said. Good case and contact management, and containing any cases in the community, are also important.
A “really scary” infection surge in December and January, when the region's case count rose by more than 8,000, “deflated us,” he said.
Spread slowed significantly in February and March, when roughly 1,700 cases were recorded.
More than 1,100 people have tested positive so far in April.
“It's unfortunate that we continue to see cases increasing in our community. We all have to do our part to make sure that we can reduce the transmission and get the first available vaccine that's available to us.”
Another COVID death was announced on Thursday. A woman in her 80s who lived in a retirement home succumbed to complications brought on by the disease, which she reportedly contracted months ago and had been battling the effects of ever since.
To date, 412 Windsor-essex residents have died as a result of COVID.
Since March of 2020, 15,022 area residents have tested positive. Roughly 14,100 of those cases are considered resolved, though some of those individuals may be suffering lasting health impacts from the disease.
The health unit also reported 57 new COVID -19 cases on Thursday. Ten were attributed to community transmission, 22 were close contacts of confirmed cases, one was related to an outbreak, and one was related to travel outside of North America.
The remaining 23 cases were still under investigation at the time of reporting.
Of the 478 local cases currently active, 20 are in hospital and three of those individuals are in intensive care.
Variants of concern continue to rise. Forty-five additional variant cases were identified in the region on Thursday, bringing the total to 635 more highly contagious variant cases — 562 cases of the variant first identified in the U.K., two of the variant first identified in South Africa, and 71 that have yet to be categorized.
Workplace outbreaks are now active at eight locations across the region: two farms in Leamington, a construction business in Windsor, three health care and social assistance settings in Windsor, and two manufacturing facilities in Windsor and Tecumseh.
The health unit has declared a new school outbreak at Amherstburg Public Elementary School. Ahmed said one case at the school was identified almost a week ago and was deemed low risk. Although students have not been in the classroom since April 9, health unit investigators determined a second case identified more recently may have been transmitted at the school, resulting in the outbreak declaration.