Respiratory illness season update - January 31, 2023

Huron Perth, ON – Respiratory illness season indicators are stabilizing or improving in Huron Perth, and residents are encouraged to continue taking actions to prevent illness spread.

The number of lab-confirmed cases of influenza and RSV in Huron Perth are declining. As of January 25, 2023 there were two active COVID-19 outbreaks in long-term care homes and 10 people in hospital due to the virus. Huron Perth Public Health has recorded eight deaths due to COVID since January 1, 2023.

Seven of the recent deaths were associated with COVID-19 outbreaks at long-term care homes, while one was a community-related death. The individuals were between the ages of 70 and 99 years.

“I extend my condolences to the loved ones of these individuals,” says Dr. Miriam Klassen, Medical Officer of Health. “COVID-19 remains a serious illness for some people, especially those who are older. While we are seeing signs of improvement, it is important to keep taking actions to protect those who are most vulnerable to severe outcomes from this virus.”

People may be at higher risk of developing severe symptoms of COVID-19 if any of the following apply:

  • 60 years of age or older
  • 18 years of age or older and immunocompromised
  • 18 to 59 years old and:
    • Having one or more underlying medical conditions (such as diabetes, heart or lung disease), or
    • Not being up-to-date on COVID-19 vaccinations.


COVID-19 and influenza vaccines still available

Vaccination is still the best protection against severe outcomes from COVID-19 and influenza. COVID-19 vaccines and flu shots continue to be available at HPPH clinics, select pharmacies, and some primary care provider offices.

Individuals who did not receive a COVID-19 booster in the fall of 2022 should get a booster now. Vaccine protection decreases over time; a booster dose can increase immunity. If you received a monovalent or bivalent COVID-19 vaccine booster on or after September 1, 2022, there is no provincial recommendation to receive another dose of COVID-19 vaccine at this time.

If you have recently had a COVID-19 infection, talk to a health care provider and/or vaccination clinic staff about vaccination options.

HPPH COVID-19 vaccine clinic dates and locations up to the end of February are available at For more information about influenza vaccines, visit


Layers of Protection

Protect yourself, your loved ones and the community by continuing to layer actions that prevent the spread of respiratory illnesses:

  • Stay home if you are sick
  • Screen for respiratory symptoms daily
  • Wear a mask in indoor public settings. Also consider wearing a mask in crowded outdoor settings.
  • Choose outdoor spaces and reduce time in crowded indoor spaces as much as you can. If indoors, choose well ventilated spaces when possible.
  • Stay up-to-date with vaccines (including COVID-19 and influenza)
  • Wash hands often
  • Regularly clean high-touch surfaces
  • Keep physical distance when possible, especially indoors. 
  • Improve ventilation and filtration in your home and maintain HVAC systems

More information on using layers of protection can be found at


For more information: