COVID-19 Update - November 24, 2021

Case count

  • As of Tuesday, November 23, Huron Perth has a cumulative total of 2,497 confirmed COVID-19 cases since the beginning of the pandemic. There are currently 33 active cases.
    • There were two deaths last week, bringing the total to 69.
    • There are currently three people hospitalized due to COVID-19.
  • We continue to see a steady number of new cases and moderate levels of community transmission in Huron Perth. The more community transmission of the virus, the higher the likelihood of outbreaks in schools, workplaces and other settings.
  • Many cases are associated with social gatherings and events. 
  • The Delta variant, which is the predominant strain of the virus in Ontario, spreads very easily in closed indoor spaces with poor ventilation, when there is prolonged close contact (within two metres) and when prevention measures such as masking, distancing and hand hygiene are not carefully followed. 
  • Being identified as a high-risk contact to a confirmed COVID-19 case requires isolation and thus can be very disruptive to school, work and other activities.
  • Please continue to follow public health measures and advice to prevent virus transmission:
    • Adhere to gathering limits
    • Stay home if ill, even with mild symptoms
    • Screen before going to work, school, church etc.
    • Wear a mask in indoor public settings and any time physical distancing can’t be maintained
    • Keep two metres from people not in your household
    • Wash hands frequently
    • Get vaccinated if you are eligible
  • The risk of acquiring COVID-19 infection is much higher in unvaccinated or partially vaccinated individuals compared to vaccinated individuals; when breakthrough cases occur in vaccinated people, they tend to be milder with a much lower risk of hospitalization, ICU admission and death.
  • Being fully vaccinated is the best protection against COVID-19, especially the Delta variant.
  • The Ontario Health West Region dashboard (https://ohwestcovid19.ca/g15dashboard/) for November 22 provides an overview of the general regional trend.

 

The Ontario Science Advisory Table Fourth wave dashboard (https://covid19-sciencetable.ca/ontario-dashboard/) shows the current status of cases in Ontario, and the current COVID-19 risk by vaccination status:

Outbreaks

  • The outbreak at Milverton Public School has been declared over.  HPPH declared an outbreak at the North Perth Spinrite Child and Family Centre on November 23.
  • There is one active workplace outbreak.
  • Details on active and past outbreaks can be found on our COVID-19 in Huron and Perth dashboard.  

COVID-19 Vaccine Update

  • As of November 22, we are reporting 207,781 vaccine doses administered in Huron Perth by HPPH and partners.  In addition, 4638 third doses have been administered.
  • For Huron Perth residents aged 12 and over, 85.6% have received one dose of vaccine, and 83.1% are fully vaccinated. 
  • Those in the 18-39 age group continue to have the lowest vaccination coverage, with almost one third not protected from infection.
  • Vaccination coverage can be viewed on our COVID-19 in Huron and Perth webpage.
  • HPPH urges everyone who is eligible to be vaccinated against COVID-19 as soon as they can. There are still approximately 9000 unvaccinated people aged 12 years and older, and  more than 18,000 children ages 0 – 11 in Huron Perth; this is a large population that can become infected with COVID-19 and drive ongoing transmission.
  • On November 19, Health Canada approved the Pfizer-BioNTech (Comirnaty) COVID-19 vaccine on for five to 11 year olds.  Children turning five by the end of 2021 (born in 2016) and older are eligible to receive the vaccine.
    • The vaccine will be given in two doses, one-third the amount of the adult dose, eight weeks apart.
  • HPPH opened appointment bookings to this age group on November 23. About 2900 appointments were booked (includes anyone eligible, not just 5-11 year olds).

Huron Perth vaccination opportunities

  • HPPH and our partners continue to offer first, second, third, and booster doses across Huron and Perth.
  • Clinics are posted on our vaccine webpage: www.hpph.ca/vaccinebooking. More dates will be added.
  • Starting November 30, some clinics will be child-friendly for 5-11 year olds.  These clinics will provide a welcoming and engaging space for children and their parents/caregivers.  While anyone eligible for vaccine can book into any clinic, we encourage people to book into the clinic most appropriate for them
  • Clinics are by appointment only.  Appointments can be booked online or by calling
    1-833-753-2098.   
  • Many local pharmacies also continue to offer COVID-19 vaccinations. The current list of pharmacies offering vaccine can be found at: https://covid19.ontario.ca/vaccine-locations.

Third and booster doses

  • Several groups are eligible for a third dose (booster dose) of COVID-19 vaccine if at least six months (168 days) have passed since their second dose (e.g. individuals aged 70 and over, health care workers)
  • Immunocompromised individuals continue to be eligible for a third dose about two months after their second dose.
  • A complete list of eligibility, including when you can receive a third dose, is provided at www.hpph.ca/thirddose
  • Before booking an appointment, we encourage people to use the dose calculator at www.hpph.ca/thirddose to determine the earliest date they are eligible to receive their third dose. If the required time since second dose has not passed, people will be turned away at the clinic.  We also cannot administer booster doses early to accommodate travel plans.

Letters of Instruction

  • HPPH updated and reissued the Letter of Instruction to sports and recreation facilities on November 17.  The following was added:
    • Effective January 1, 2022, all children shall be afforded a “grace period” of 12 weeks from their 12th birthday during which they must provide identification in accordance with these Instructions but are relieved of the requirement to provide proof of being fully vaccinated against COVID-19, to allow a reasonable opportunity for this to be completed
  • On November 19, HPPH issued a Letter of Instruction to places of worship.  The LOI is intended to help all faith-based organizations understand their obligations under the Reopening Ontario Act and local recommendations from Huron Perth Public Health.
  • Instructions and Section 22 Orders are available on our website at https://www.hpph.ca/en/health-matters/section-22-orders-and-instructions.aspx.

Influenza

  • The influenza virus can cause severe respiratory illness. We strongly encourage everyone 6 months and older to get their influenza vaccination (“flu shot”) this year. The vaccine is your best defence against influenza illness and related complications.
  • The influenza vaccine is available through primary care provider offices (family doctors and nurse practitioners) for ages 6 months and older, and through pharmacies. We encourage anyone with children aged 2 and older to check with their local pharmacy.
  • The influenza vaccine can be given at the same time as the COVID-19 vaccine in individuals aged 12 and over.  For 5-11 year olds, it must be given 14 days before or after the COVID-19 vaccine.