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New COVID-19 cases in London-Middlesex

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Four new cases of the novel coronavirus have been confirmed locally in London-Middlesex Saturday, one day after zero new cases were reported.

According to the Middlesex-London Health Unit (MLHU), the new cases bring the region’s total number of COVID-19 cases to 495, which includes 48 deaths.

The death count has stayed the same compared to the day before, but the number of recoveries rose by six to 363.

As of Saturday, 458 of the region’s cases have been reported in London, where all four new cases were confirmed.

Elsewhere, there have been 20 cases in Strathroy-Caradoc, seven in Middlesex Centre, four in North Middlesex, four in Thames Centre and one each in Lucan-Biddulph and Southwest Middlesex.

It’s unclear how many cases remain active in each location.


A chart from the MLHU showing the number of cases in London and Middlesex by reported date, Jan. 24 to May 22, 2020.


Middlesex-London Health Unit

Around 20 per cent of the region’s cases have involved hospitalizations, including 5.66 per cent who have been admitted to intensive care.

A total of 17 COVID-19 patients were being treated in University and Victoria hospitals as of midnight Friday, according to London Health Sciences Centre (LHSC).

The number of active outbreaks remains unchanged at seven, all of which are at local long-term care and retirement homes.

The most recent outbreak was declared on Wednesday at Henley Place, a long-term care home in London. It’s the second outbreak to be declared at the home, after an outbreak that was active from March 28 until May 17.

 

A chart from MLHU showing the number of cases in London and Middlesex by association with a long-term care home, retirement home, or other, Jan. 24 to May 22, 2020.

A chart from MLHU showing the number of cases in London and Middlesex by association with a long-term care home, retirement home, or other, Jan. 24 to May 22, 2020.


Middlesex-London Health Unit

Outbreaks remain active at Country Terrace, Mount Hope Centre for Long-Term Care (St. Mary’s 5th Floor), Waverly Mansion, Sisters of St. Joseph, Meadow Park Care Centre and Kensington Village (LTCH).

As of Saturday, 98 cases have been reported in long-term care homes involving 58 residents and 40 staff members, while 63 cases have been reported in retirement homes involving 43 residents and 20 staff members. Twenty-one deaths have been reported at long-term care homes, and seven at retirement homes. These numbers remain unchanged from Friday.

At least 41 staff members at London Health Sciences Centre (LHSC) have tested positive during the pandemic, a figure that remains unchanged from its previous update on Wednesday. It’s not clear how many cases have resolved and where the staff worked within LHSC.

Provincially, Ontario reported 412 new cases of the novel coronavirus Saturday morning, bringing the total number of cases in the province to 25,040.

The death toll increased by 27 to 2,048.

Over 19,100 cases are considered resolved, which makes up 76.5 per cent of all confirmed cases.

Just over 11,000 additional tests have been conducted, and around 5,900 cases are under investigation.

Nationally, Canada is seeing a total of 82,881 cases with 412 more Saturday, the death count rose by 27 to 6,277, and the number of recoveries increased by 379 to 42,986.

Elgin and Oxford

Numbers related to COVID-19 remain unchanged in the region compared to Friday, according to health officials.

The total number of COVID-19 cases sits at 71, with 57 recoveries — about 80 per cent — and four deaths.

 

Southwestern Public Health (SWPH) also announced an outbreak declared earlier this week at a long-term care facility in Ingersoll had worsened, with an additional six staff members having since tested positive.


In total, seven staff have been confirmed positive at Secord Trails Care Community as of Saturday morning. The outbreak was declared on May 18.

No residents have tested positive at the facility, according to SWPH.

The outbreak at Secord Trails is one of three to be declared in the region. The other two, at Beattie Manor and Caressant Care Bonnie Place, have since been resolved.

A chart from SWPH showing the per cent positivity rate of coronavirus tests in the region, April 3 to May 22, 2020.

A chart from SWPH showing the per cent positivity rate of coronavirus tests in the region, April 3 to May 22, 2020.


Southwestern Public Health

Ten cases remain active in SWPH jurisdiction, nine of them in Oxford County, including four in Ingersoll, two in Tillsonburg and Woodstock, and one in East Zorra-Tavistock.

One is located in Elgin County in Malahide, according to the health unit.

As of Saturday, 3,983 tests had been administered in Elgin and Oxford counties. Of those, 259 were awaiting results.

Huron and Perth

No new cases, recoveries or deaths have been reported in Huron and Perth counties, health officials said Saturday.

 

This keeps the total number of confirmed cases at 50, of which 44 have recovered and five have died.

The region’s lone active case was reported on Thursday. It was the first time a case had been reported by the health unit in nearly three weeks.

A chart from HPPH showing cumulative totals of COVID-19 cases, deaths, and recoveries from early March to May 22, 2020. The health unit notes the graph uses symptom onset date for cumulative confirmed cases. If the person does not have symptoms, the date of the swab test is used.

A chart from HPPH showing cumulative totals of COVID-19 cases, deaths, and recoveries from early March to May 22, 2020. The health unit notes the graph uses symptom onset date for cumulative confirmed cases. If the person does not have symptoms, the date of the swab test is used.


HPPH

Health officials say the new case involves a resident of Maitland Manor, a long-term care home in Goderich, which has declared an outbreak — the region’s seventh and only active outbreak.

The resident is in stable condition and contract tracing is ongoing, the health unit said in a statement Friday.

Six other outbreaks have been declared over.

Nearly half of all cases reported in Huron and Perth, 23, are linked to the outbreaks, health unit figures show.



 

Of the region’s five deaths, four have been linked to the resolved outbreak at Greenwood Court in Stratford. The home saw 10 staff infections and six resident infections.

Stratford itself has seen 25 of the region’s reported cases.

As of Saturday, the health unit says 2,707 tests have been administered in Huron and Perth. Of those, 88 were awaiting test results.

 

Sarnia and Lambton

According to regional health officials, one more person has died due to COVID-19 and two more have tested positive. The number of recoveries remains unchanged.

As of late Friday night, the area is seeing 245 confirmed cases of the coronavirus, with 20 deaths and 173 recoveries — about 71 per cent of cases.

One of the cases is linked to Vision Nursing Home, a long-term care facility in Sarnia, which has had an active outbreak of COVID-19 since April 23.

It’s the fourth day in a row that cases have been confirmed at the facility, which has now seen a total of 20 residents and 19 staff test positive — one more from the day before.

Four residents of this facility have also died.

A chart from Lambton Public Health showing the number of confirmed cases in the county by reported date, March 24 to May 22, 2020.

A chart from Lambton Public Health showing the number of confirmed cases in the county by reported date, March 24 to May 22, 2020.


Lambton Public Health

The facility is home to one of three active outbreaks.

The other two, at Marshall Gowland Manor and Village on the St. Clair, have seen one resident test positive and two residents test positive, respectively. Both outbreaks were declared active on May 15.

It’s unclear how many cases linked to the three outbreaks remain active.

Three other outbreaks at Landmark Village, Lambton Meadowview Villa and Sumac Lodge have since been declared over

 

Landmark Village remains the worst outbreak to be seen in the county, with 30 resident and 10 staff cases, and six resident deaths. It was declared over May 6.

Health unit figures show long-term care and retirement home residents make up nearly a quarter of all cases, 22 per cent, while health-care workers make up 17 per cent.

Sarnia’s Bluewater Health was treating five confirmed COVID-19 patients as of Saturday morning, in addition to eight patients who were suspected positive or awaiting tests — eight less from Friday.

— With files from Global News’ Ryan Rocca and Matthew Trevithick 

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New Brunswick doctor says he does not know where he picked up COVID-19 – OHS Canada

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FREDERICTON — A New Brunswick doctor blamed by many, including the premier, for spreading COVID-19 in a growing cluster of new cases told Radio-Canada on Tuesday that he’s not sure how he picked up the virus.

Dr. Jean Robert Ngola said he recently travelled from Campbellton, N.B., to Quebec to pick up his four-year-old daughter because the girl’s mother had to attend a funeral in Africa.

Ngola admitted that upon his return from the overnight trip, he did not self-isolate for 14 days, but added he does not know if he caught the coronavirus on his travels or from a patient.

“Perhaps it was an error in judgment, but I did not go to Quebec to go to take the virus and come to give it to my patients,” Ngola told morning show La Matinale.

There are 13 active COVID-19 cases in the province that had just weeks ago seen all of its coronavirus cases recovered.

On Tuesday, the Public Health Department reported another COVID-19 case in an outbreak at Manoir de la Vallee, a care home in Altholville in the northern part of the province.

All of New Brunswick’s active cases are in the health region known as Zone 5, and all have been linked to a cluster in the Campbellton area.

Officials, including Premier Blaine Higgs, have said the cluster began when a health-care worker travelled to Quebec and returned to work at Campbellton Regional Hospital without self-isolating.

But Ngola told La Matinale that his COVID-19 diagnosis threw him, and he’s not sure how he was exposed. His daughter tested positive as well and both have been in quarantine since, but neither have had any symptoms.

Doctor has faced racist attacks

The doctor, who is of Congolese descent, said he has been the victim of racist attacks online since public attention was directed to his case. His name and photo were shared on social media with racist comments describing him as “the bad doctor who went to get the virus to kill people here.”

Ngola told the radio program he took precautions when travelling and did not stop en route.

He continued working upon his return to Campbellton and left his daughter in the care of an essential service workers’ daycare centre.

On May 25, he was told that one of his patients had tested positive for COVID-19. He called the man, whom he’d seen May 19 for a prescription renewal, and stopped working right away.

Ngola said as a patient, he also has the right to confidentiality.

The Campbellton COVID-19 cluster has led to increased testing in the region, where the Vitalite health authority offered tests to anyone who asked from Friday through Sunday.

More than 3,300 were completed over the weekend and Zone 5 has moved back a step in the province’s reopening plan.

A Tuesday news release from the province’s Public Health Department said the newest positive case is a person their 80s linked to Manoir de la Vallee, where a worker tested positive last week.

Five residents have now tested positive for the virus and the regional director for Lokia Group, the company that owns the home, said Monday that two had been hospitalized.

The province said Tuesday that five people are in the hospital due to COVID-19, including one person in intensive care.

Chief doctor pleads for patience

Dr. Jennifer Russell, chief medical officer of health, said in a statement that New Brunswickers should be patient as the province monitors the outbreak.

“We have 14 days ahead of us to see how things unfold,” Russell’s statement read. “In the meantime, I ask New Brunswickers to continue to demonstrate their compassion, kindness and patience throughout the province.”

At a news conference last week, Premier Blaine Higgs did not refer to Dr. Ngola by name, but criticized him as “irresponsible” and said the matter had been referred to the RCMP, potentially leading to charges for violating public health orders.

Days later, Higgs walked back his remarks slightly and appeared to acknowledge the outrage, telling people to leave investigation into any wrongdoing up to law enforcement and the person’s employer.

“I know people are upset, but we don’t want anyone taking matters into their own hands,” he said.

Campbellton Mayor Stephanie Anglehart-Paulin told The Canadian Press on Saturday that she was embarrassed by many of the comments on social media directed at the doctor, which she described as “pretty hateful and nasty.”

By Holly McKenzie-Sutter in St. John’s, N.L., with files from Sidhartha Banerjee in Montreal

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Hydroxychloroquine fails to prevent COVID-19 in those at high risk, trial shows – CBC.ca

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The drug hydroxychloroquine, which has been the subject of heated debate as a potential treatment for COVID-19, was not effective in preventing the disease in Canadians and Americans at high risk, according to the first gold standard clinical trial.

In Wednesday’s issue of the New England Journal of Medicine, medical researchers reported on testing the use of hydroxychloroquine in 821 adults throughout the U.S. and in Quebec, Manitoba and Alberta. The participants did not have symptoms but were exposed to someone with confirmed COVI9-19 in a health-care or household setting.

Hydroxychloroquine is often used to treat autoimmune diseases such as lupus. U.S. President Donald Trump said he’s taken hydroxychloroquine, although he’s not tested positive for the coronavirus infection. No studies have proven this drug or any others are effective against COVID-19.

The exposures were all considered high risk, because the participants were less than two meters away from a confirmed case for more than 10 minutes without wearing a mask or face shield. The goal of the randomized trial was to see if hydroxychloroquine could prevent symptoms of infection, known as postexposure prophylaxis, compared with taking a sugar pill.

“In this trial, high doses of hydroxychloroquine did not prevent illness compatible with COVID-19 when initiated within four days after a high-risk or moderate-risk exposure,” the study’s authors wrote.

Gold standard method

Dr. Emily McDonald, a physician at the Research Institute of the McGill University Health Centre, co-authored the randomized control trial in which half of participants were randomly assigned to the drug and half to the placebo without investigators knowing to avoid bias in interpreting any symptoms or their resolution.

McDonald called it the gold standard method to have the best evidence to support how to prevent spread of COVID-19.

“When we politicize the drug and we stop studies early for reasons that are perhaps not entirely valid, we risk never answering the question properly because the enrolment for the studies drops off,” McDonald said.

“There are also hundreds of patients that have contributed their data to randomized trials because they also felt a responsibility to help the scientific community answer this question.”

Overall, 107 of 821 of participants developed COVID-19 based on a swab or compatible symptoms during 14 days of followup.

No deaths occurred

Of those who received hydroxychloroquine, investigators said 49 developed the disease compared with 58 in the placebo group, a difference that could simply be random.

Two patients were hospitalized, one in each group. No deaths occurred.

Medication side-effects such as nausea and abdominal discomfort were more common for patients taking hydroxychloroquine compared to placebo (40 per cent versus 17 per cent), but no serious treatment-related adverse reactions were reported, including any heart arrhythmia.

Earlier on Wednesday, the World Health Organization announced it was resuming the hydroxychloroquine arm of its Solidarity trial into potential treatments for COVID-19 following a pause to check for any potential safety concerns such as heart problems.

The Solidarity trial includes participants and researchers in Canada. 

Previous studies of hydroxychloroquine were observational in design, which greatly increases the potential for bias when managing patients compared with a well conducted, randomized clinical trial.

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2 new cases of COVID-19, bringing total long-term care residents infected to 5 – CBC.ca

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There are two new cases of COVID-19 in the province, both related to a recent outbreak in the Campbellton region.

There are now 15 active cases of COVID-19, all in Zone 5, which has been returned to the orange phase of recovery while restrictions remain eased in the rest of the province.

The new cases are an individual between 40 and 49 years of age, and an individual between 60 and 69 years of age.

A provincial press release said one of the two new cases is linked to a close contact of a previously identified case, and the other one is linked to Manoir de la Vallée, a long-term care facility in Atholville.

Social Development Minister Dorothy Shephard said in total, the facility has three staff and five residents test positive.

There are five people in hospital and one in the intensive care unit, the release said.

Three of the hospitalized people are residents of the long-term care home, Shephard said, including the ICU patient.

“To the best of my knowledge I can tell you that [their condition] is stable,” Shephard said.

All of the cases are isolated in the memory care wing of the facility, Shephard said. 

“This memory care wing would have doors, like locked doors,” shes said. “We can’t say 100 per cent that a patient doesn’t wander in some fashion but it’s very much minimized.”

She said all the rooms are private, but residents do share a bathroom.

“A cleaning crew has been brought on to support staff in washing down washrooms three times a day at a minimum,” she said.

Two of the positive residents are still in the wing in Atholville she said, and the staff members are isolating in their homes. 

She said administrators are in contact with family members on a daily basis. She said she’s sure residents and families are worried.

“But I’m sure that staff is doing everything they can to give them assurances that every precaution is being taken to protect them.”

Social Development Minister Dorothy Shephard says three of the six people in hospital are long-term care home residents. One is in ICU and in ‘stable’ condition. (Ed Hunter/CBC)

The release said a Quebec resident has also tested positive, and is also linked to the facility, but the case will be counted as part of Quebec’s statistics.

Public H​​​​​ealth has previously linked the outbreak to a doctor who travelled to Quebec and didn’t self-isolate for the mandatory 14 days when he returned.

The province has conducted 31,791 tests in total, including 1,125 in the last 24 hours.

What to do if you have symptoms?

The province says if you or a member of your family are showing two of the following symptoms, contact Tele-Care 811 or your primary health-care provider:

  • Fever above 38°C or signs of fever (such as chills).
  • A new cough or worsening chronic cough.
  • Sore throat.
  • Runny nose.
  • Headache.
  • A new onset of fatigue.
  • A new onset of muscle pain.
  • Diarrhea.
  • Loss of sense of taste or loss of sense of smell.
  • In children, purple markings on the fingers or toes. In this instance, testing will be done even if none of the other symptoms are present.

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