The Windsor-Essex County Health Unit is reporting 30 new cases of COVID-19 today. Of the new cases announced, two are related to outbreaks, eight are from close contact with another confirmed case, one is considered community spread, one is travel related to Michigan, and 18 are under investigation. Our region now has 273 active cases, bringing the total number of cases to 13,475, 24 confirmed cases in the hospital with four in the ICU, 12,801 cases listed as resolved, and 401 deaths. Across the province today there were 1,508 new cases reported. Yesterday there were 1,074 cases and on Monday there were 1,268 cases.
The City of Windsor, the local health unit, and Essex-Windsor EMS started their vaccination program today at the Temporary Emergency Shelter at the Aquatic Centre for people in the city who are experiencing homelessness. You can read more here.
Our caucus has called on the provincial government to listen to the Ontario Science Table and bring vaccines directly to vulnerable seniors living in high-rise towers in hotspot communities. It is not enough to pass the buck to over-stretched public health units, we need to bring the resources of the province to bear on this challenge to help bring COVID infections under control and to fix vaccine inequities.
There are new cases of COVID-19 being reported in schools. The Windsor-Essex Catholic District School Board has reported positive cases of COVID-19 at St. William Catholic Elementary School and St. James Catholic Elementary School. 25 students from each school will be isolating and the local health unit has contacted anyone affected. Parents are being reminded to monitor their children for symptoms of COVID-19 each morning and to keep them home if they’re sick. The Greater Essex County District School Board has reported that a student at Walkerville Collegiate Institute has tested positive. The school board has notified close contacts and they are following the direction of the local health unit.
The COVID-19 outbreak has been lifted at Windsor Regional Hospital which was declared a month ago. The hospital says that precautions remain in place at both the Ouellette and Met campuses and on all units to identify potential outbreaks early.
While today is St. Patrick’s Day and many people will have the urge to go out to celebrate with their friends, I would like to remind everyone that we must stay diligent in our fight to reduce the spread of COVID-19. This means we must continue following public health advice by staying at home, only going out for essential trips, wearing a mask, and practicing physical distancing of 2 metres apart at all times when around others who live outside your household, and washing your hands frequently.