The Windsor-Essex County Health Unit is reporting 53 new COVID-19 cases today and one additional death from someone in the community. Of the new cases announced today, 12 are related to outbreaks, nine are from close contact with another confirmed case, six are considered community spread, one is travel related outside of Canada, and 25 are under investigation. Our region now has 821 active cases, bringing our total up to 11,968 cases, 89 confirmed cases in the hospital with 12 in the ICU, 10,843 cases listed as resolved, and 304 deaths. Across the province there were 2,093 new cases of COVID-19 today. On Wednesday there were 1,670 cases, on Tuesday there were 1,740 cases, and on Monday there were 1,958 cases.
New modelling was released today that indicates COVID-19 cases are expected to drop between 1,000-2,000 by the end of February, but that could change if the new COVID-19 variant is not contained. While there is good news that cases are declining in long-term care homes, sadly, the number of deaths across the province continue to increase.
Dr. Ahmed, the local Medical Officer of Health for our region, has issued a Section 22 Order to ensure people who are supposed to be self-isolating after testing positive for COVID-19, have symptoms and are waiting for test results, or are listed as close contacts of a confirmed case, are doing so. The Order requires individuals to share their close contacts and places they have visited. Under this Order, an individual can be charged up to $5,000 and it will take effect on February 1.You can read more here.
The Ministry of Health said today that the province has been over reporting the number of people who have been fully vaccinated against COVID-19. The Ministry of Health said that “instead of providing data on the number of people who have been fully vaccinated, officials inadvertently provided data on the number of doses administered to achieve full vaccination.” The error of double-counting completed COVID-19 vaccinations is another symptom of Ontario’s slow and sloppy vaccine roll out. This government is recording some vaccinations with a paper-and-pencil system. Doses have been left sitting in freezers, while no plan has been released to scale-up to get millions of Ontarians vaccinated. The Premier refused to invest in advance planning, and people are paying the price for that. You can read more here.
Changes are being made to Windsor Regional Hospital’s Assessment Centre, as fewer individuals are seeking COVID-19 tests. Starting Monday, February 1, the Met Campus location will be open 8am-3pm Monday through Friday. Hours at the Ouellette Campus location will remain the same, 8am-7pm seven days a week. To book a COVID-19 test, please follow this link: https://www.wrh.on.ca/OnlineBooking.
The provincial government announced that off-peak electricity rates of 8.5 cents per kilowatt-hour will be extended until February 9. This lower rate is available 24 hours per day, seven days a week for Time-Of-Use and tiered customers. You can find the full announcement here.
The Education Minister announced that some Ontario school boards are resuming in-person learning on February 1. As COVID-19 continues to spread rapidly in our communities, parents and families are anxious to see supports in place to ensure a return to in-person school is done safely, with children and staff given the utmost protection. We need to see a 15-student cap on class sizes, better and safer ventilation in classrooms, a comprehensive asymptomatic testing strategy for students and paid sick days for all workers. In-class learning is scheduled to resume on February 10 in Windsor-Essex.
Chilifest will be back this February after being cancelled this past November. This version of the fundraiser will use pre-orders and curbside pickup and will run from February 22 – 26. A 32oz container that serves four will be sold for $20, with $2 of each purchase going to the Windsor firefighter's charitable fund. You can place your order and pick up time by calling 519-252-8311 ext. 4651.
Please follow all public health guidelines to stop the spread of the virus, including staying home, wearing a face mask when out in public for an essential trip, continuing to practice social distancing of two metres from other people outside of your household (even if you are wearing a mask), and washing your hands often.