Local News News Walkerton Herald-Times

17 new COVID-19 cases reported in Grey-Bruce

GREY-BRUCE – The Grey Bruce Health Unit is reporting 17 new cases of COVID-19 today (Nov. 18).

Nine cases are in Kincardine, five in Southgate, and one each in Grey Highlands, Arran-Elderslie and West Grey.

There are now 42 active cases in the region, and 244 confirmed cases since the pandemic began earlier this year.

GBHU also notes there are 10 active probable cases. These are cases that are not lab confirmed but are linked to an active case and meet case symptoms.

The health unit also reported on Nov. 18 that there are 196 high risk contacts associated with active cases.

There is currently one person hospitalized due to COVID-19, and 188 have recovered.

A breakdown of COVID-19 cases in the region, by community, as of Nov. 18, 2020. (Grey Bruce Health Unit graphic)

The GBHU catchment area is currently in the Green (prevent) level of the province’s colour-coded COVID-19 framework that was introduced on Nov. 3. The framework includes five levels: Green (prevent), Yellow (protect), Orange (restrict), Red (control); and Grey (lockdown – a measure of last and urgent resort).

Dr. Ian Arra, Grey-Bruce’s medical officer of health, says residents need to remain vigilant with COVID-19 precautions in order to remain in the Green.

“We have been seeing a deeply concerning trend of a significant increase in the number of cases locally, and in the number of close contacts of these cases,” he said in his Nov. 18 situation report.

“These findings are indicative of fatigue related to following public health measures. It is important that we re-focus our energy on the basic measures that can keep us safe – the same ones that got us through the spring first wave.”

Some of those basic measures, he says, include “The 3 Ws” of washing hands frequently, watching distance (ideally six feet from others) and wearing face coverings correctly.

Other recommendations from public health officials in the province include:

  • avoid social gatherings and limit close contacts to your household or the people you live with;
  • maintain two metres of physical distancing from everyone else;
  • wear a face covering indoors and wear one outdoors if physical distancing may not be maintained or if wearing one is required;
  • wash your hands thoroughly and regularly;
  • stay home if you have COVID-19 symptoms, even if mild;
  • “cover your cough”;
  • get tested if you have symptoms compatible with COVID-19, or if you’ve been advised of exposure;
  • people from higher transmission regions should avoid travel to lower transmission regions, except for essential reasons; and
  • download the COVID Alert mobile app.