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Top doc warns increased restrictions as COVID numbers rise in Grey-Bruce

Grey Bruce Health Unit’s (GBHU) top doctor is warning of increased restrictions to come as the region marks its second consecutive day of double-digit COVID-19 cases.

According to Dr. Ian Arra, medical officer of health of GBHU, based on the recent increase in COVID-19 numbers, GBHU will “most likely” be moving from the green to the yellow level of Ontario’s COVID-19 colour-coded framework in the imminent future.

“This means greater restrictions and enhanced enforcement – including operational restrictions on bars and restaurants, sports and recreational facilities, personal care services, retail spaces and other businesses – an outcome that none of us desires. Collectively, it is in our control to change course,” stated Arra in a news release.

Today, GBHU is reporting 12 new cases of COVID-19 in the past 24.

The 12 new COVID-19 cases are located in Southgate (6), Hanover (2), Grey Highlands (1), The Town of The Blue Mountains (1), Owen Sound (1), Kincardine (1).

This is the second consecutive day GBHU has reported double-digit cases, after reporting 17 new cases yesterday.

“The increase in numbers is most likely an indication of people lowering their guards due to COVID fatigue; fatigue in maintaining essential public health prevention measures,” Arra said.

The cumulative total number of COVID-19 cases in GBHU is now 256, with 53 confirmed-active cases.

The active Grey County cases are currently located in Owen Sound (1), Southgate (14), Grey Highlands (8), West Grey (2), Blue Mountains (2), Hanover (5). There are 21 active cases in Bruce County.

GBHU has also identified 211 high-risk contacts associated with the 53 active cases.

“There has been a significant increase in the average number of close contacts for each case in the second wave compared to the first wave,” Arra continued. “The increases in these numbers are cumulative. If the trend continues, the case and contact management capacity, that we need to maintain control over the situation, will be challenged.”

GBHU has also indicated there are 16 active probable cases. An active probable case is considered to be someone that is linked to an active case and is showing symptoms but has not received lab-confirmed test results.

The 16 active probable cases are located in Southgate (12), Grey Highlands (2) and Kincardine (2).

Of the 256 cumulative cases, 189 cases have recovered and 14 cases were referred to other health units.

There are currently two people being hospitalized in the region, as well as one probable case that was hospitalized and discharged within 24-hours.

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There are no outbreaks in any long-term care facilities, daycares or schools in GBHU. And, GBHU continues to be one of the only health units in Ontario to have no deaths as a result of COVID-19.

Lab-confirmed COVID-19 cases in Grey County included - Owen Sound (66); Southgate (35); Grey Highlands (27); Meaford (13); West Grey (13); Blue Mountains (11); Hanover (10); Georgian Bluffs (2); Chatsworth (1). Bruce County has had 78 confirmed cases.
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