COVID-19 Omicron wave update

Huron Perth, ON – As the Province continues its cautious approach to Reopening Ontario, Huron Perth Public Health (HPPH) thanks residents for their continued kindness towards others during this Omicron wave. 

“Indicators such as hospitalizations and ICU admissions are improving across Ontario,” says Dr. Miriam Klassen, Medical Officer of Health for Huron Perth. “Public health measures in place during this Omicron wave are working, but virus transmission is still high. This has been an incredibly challenging time for many, and we would all like the pandemic to be over. I appreciate all of the efforts that residents have made, and continue to make, to support one another. By continuing to follow public health measures, we can protect our healthcare system, protect our most vulnerable citizens and continue the successful reopening of public settings.”

On January 20, the Province announced its plan to gradually lift public health restrictions, while maintaining protective measures, over the next few months. Some measures were eased January 31, and others are set to follow February 21 and March 14.

In-school learning resumed January 17. In Huron Perth, absenteeism monitoring in schools and childcare has not shown any concerning trends to date. In addition, the reopening of schools to in-person learning has not had a significant impact on community transmission or hospitalizations. The number of active outbreaks in highest-risk settings, including long-term care homes and hospitals, has declined. On January 19, HPPH reported 17 active outbreaks; as of February 9, there were 6 active outbreaks.

At the same time, during the Omicron wave there has been a steady number of hospitalizations. Sadly, 16 Huron Perth residents have died due to COVID since January 1, 2022. Our condolences go out to the families and friends of those individuals.

During these difficult times, HPPH thanks residents for continuing to follow public health measures to protect themselves and the community. Vaccination remains the best defence against COVID-19. Individuals who are not vaccinated remain at much higher risk of severe outcomes from COVID-19. Currently in Ontario, the rate of COVID-19 patients in hospital is six times higher among unvaccinated individuals compared to those with at least two doses of vaccine. The rate of COVID-19 patients in ICU is almost eleven times higher. HPPH urges everyone eligible to get vaccinated as soon as they are able. 

As of February 6, HPPH and partners have administered 288,980 vaccine doses in Huron Perth. Eighty-four percent of Huron Perth residents aged five and older have received at least one dose of vaccine, and 80% are fully vaccinated with two doses. In addition, nearly 60% of residents aged 18 and older have received three doses of vaccine.

Vaccination opportunities

COVID-19 vaccination clinics are returning to smaller communities in Huron and Perth throughout the month of February, in addition to the Goderich and Stratford clinic locations.

All clinics are family friendly and welcome eligible individuals ages 5 and up. If families are having trouble getting to a vaccination due to lack of transportation or childcare, they can call HPPH at 1-833-753-2098 or email vaccinebookinghelp@hpph.ca. For questions about the vaccine itself, parents and guardians can call their child’s primary care provider. In addition, parents can contact the SickKids COVID-19 Vaccine Consult Service to book a confidential phone appointment with a SickKids paediatric Registered Nurse through www.sickkids.ca/vaccineconsult or by calling 1-888-304-6558.

Due to a more stable supply of Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine in Ontario, HPPH mass vaccination clinics can once again provide either mRNA vaccine (Pfizer or Moderna) to adults aged 30 and older.

Appointments are no longer required to attend HPPH vaccination clinics; eligible individuals can walk-in to any clinic for a first, second or third/booster dose. Booked appointments are still available for those who wish to schedule an appointment in advance, and will continue to take priority at clinics. 

To see the latest vaccination opportunities and upcoming clinic dates and locations, visit www.hpph.ca/GetVaccinated

Those eligible can book an appointment through:

  • the provincial booking system online at https://covid-19.ontario.ca/book-vaccine/
  • the Provincial Vaccine Booking Line at 1-833-943-3900 (open 7 days a week, 8 am to 8 pm)
  • the HPPH booking line at 1-833-753-2098 (open Monday-Friday 9 am to 3:30 pm)

 

For more information: