Lambton Public Well being strikes to grey lock on Monday, province – London says

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Lambton Public Health will go on gray lock on Monday to curb increased coronavirus case rates in the region, the Ontario government said on Friday.

Lambton is one of only three regions of the health unit moving to another level of the province’s COVID-19 response framework next week, and the only one moving into the gray lockdown. The province is using its “emergency braking mechanism” to impose the lockdown.

It comes almost three weeks after Lambton Province moved from orange restriction to red control.

The new change, which goes into effect on Monday at 12:01 a.m., makes Lambton the only southern Ontario region outside of Peel and Toronto on lockdown as local case rates have continued to rise steadily.

Lambton Public Health has already registered at least 210 cases since early March, four fewer than the same period reported by the Middlesex-London Health Unit, which has jurisdiction over 3.5 times the population.

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“The local situation is worrying as it can spread rapidly in our community,” said Dr. Sudit Ranade, the region’s medical health officer, in a statement.

“Increased rates of COVID-19 cases, including growing levels of Concerning Variants (VOCs), a number of active outbreaks and significant evidence of community spread are key indicators to support this decision.”

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Health officials reported at least 20 screened variant-positive cases in Lambton County as of Friday – an increase of 11 from Thursday. All remain under genomic sequencing. Ten outbreaks were listed as active in the county on Friday, with two reported that day at two Sarnia care homes.

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According to the health unit, Lambton has also increased the weekly incidence rate for all age groups, especially those under the age of 50, and increased the positivity rate for tests from the week of February 18 to 3.1 percent from 1.7 a week earlier.

As of Friday, Lambton’s 7-day average was 18.85, down from 18.71 the week before and 9.0 the week before.

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Lambton has also dealt with a markedly high number of active cases in his schools. As of Friday, at least 49 cases had been active in schools in the county, according to Lambton-Kent District and St. Clair Catholic District school boards.

At least two of the nine variant cases in the region studied have been associated with Brooke Central Public School in Alvinston, Ontario, which is also home to one of the region’s ten active outbreaks. A total of six cases are active at the school.

Outbreaks are also active at two other schools in Sarnia, with two cases each reported.

By comparison, 10 cases of active schools were reported by the Middlesex-London Health Unit on Thursday, and two were active in schools in neighboring Huron Perth Public Health.

“Outbreaks in schools reflect the transmission in the community. The added risk associated with VOCs circulating is a matter of concern as we are only just beginning to learn more about these variants around the world, ”Ranade said in a statement.

The launch of the vaccines in the region, which began Jan. 26, saw a minimum of 9,414 doses being administered on Tuesday, according to the health unit.

You can find information about the local vaccination campaign on the website of the health unit.

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Under lockdown, indoor gatherings with people outside your household are prohibited, and outdoor gatherings are limited to 10 people by the province.

The change also includes stricter rules for businesses, including restaurants and bars that are only allowed to offer takeout, drive through and delivery.

Indoor sports and recreational fitness facilities are closed with limited exceptions, while stores and retailers are allowed to offer personal purchases, but with strict capacity limits – 50 percent for supermarkets and other stores that primarily sell groceries and 25 percent for all other retail stores.

For more information on the impact of the gray lockdown, visit the province’s website.

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