The number of active cases of COVID-19 across the territory of the Eastern Ontario Health Unit (EOHU) increased from 565 cases on Friday, January 8 to 695 active cases on Monday, January 11.

The greatest number of active cases continues to be in the City of Cornwall where there were 244 active cases as of Monday.  The second-greatest number of cases were in Clarence-Rockland where there were 92 active cases as of Monday, followed by the third greatest number in South Glengarry with 68 active cases.

East Hawkesbury continued to defy trends and continued to have zero active COVID-19 cases as of January 11.

As of Monday, there were 254 active cases of COVID-19 in the United Counties of Prescott and Russell, and 160 cases in the United Counties of Stormont, Dundas, and Glengarry in addition to the 244 cases in Cornwall.  There were also 37 active cases in the portion of the Akwesasne First Nation under Canadian jurisdiction.

There were 18 COVID-19 patients from communities under EOHU jurisdiction in hospital as of January 11 five of those patients were in intensive care.  EOHU Medical Officer of Health Dr. Paul Roumeliotis said on Monday that all COVID-19 intensive care patients are at the Cornwall Community Hospital or hospitals in Ottawa.  He was unable to confirm a rumour that a COVID-19 patient had been transferred from the hospital in Hawkesbury to a hospital in Hull, Québec.

The number of deaths due to COVID-19 across the EOHU’s territory on January 11 increased to 38 from 36 on January 8.  Roumeliotis said that both deaths were at the TSIIonKwa NonhSoTe long-term care facility in Akwesasne.

The EOHU COVID-19 testing and assessment centres in Alexandria and Casselman are temporarily closed until January 22.

Vaccination plan

On Monday, Roumeliotis explained more of the plan the EOHU and Ontario government have to ensure people are vaccinated against COVID-19.  Vaccinations across the EOHU’s territory are to begin this week with residents of long-term care facilities and other group living institutions.  Health workers will be vaccinated next.  In the third stage, essential workers such as police officers, firefighters, teachers, and food service workers will be vaccinated.

Roumeliotis emphasized that the exact days of various stages of the vaccination plan are not set, but that they are to take place during the months ahead.  He is also anticipating more vaccines will become available.

Long-term care outbreaks

The following health care facilities, long-term care or retirement facilities, and other group living institutions under EOHU jurisdiction had active cases of COVID-19 as of January 11:

Chateau Glengarry in Alexandria

Maxville Manor

Villa St-Albert in St-Albert

Foyer St-Viateur Nursing Home in Limoges

Lancaster Long-Term Care

Riverwood Manor in Cornwall

Heartwood Long-Term Care Centre in Cornwall

Cornwall Community Hospital—Inpatient Mental Health Unit

Heritage Heights in Cornwall

Glen-Stor-Dun Lodge in Cornwall

Sandfield Place Long-Term Care and Retirement Home in Cornwall

Woodland Villa in Long Sault

TSIIonKwa NonhSoTe Long-Term Care Facility in Akwesasne

Ontario situation 

As of January 11, number of new active cases of COVID-19 across Ontario increased by 3,338 from January 10.  There were 28,632 active cases of COVID-19 across Ontario as of Monday, based on calculations using statistics from the Ministry of Health.

The cumulative number of cases of COVID-19 across Ontario was 219,120 as of January 11.  On Monday, the Ministry reported that 183,476 of those cases were resolved.  Resolved cases do not include deaths.

There were 1,563 COVID-19 patients in hospital across Ontario as of January 11.  Out of those 1,563 patients, 387 were in intensive care, and 268 patients were on ventilators.

There had been 5,012 deaths due to COVID-19 across Ontario as of January 11.

Due to the serious situation involving increased cases of COVID-19 across Ontario, Premier Doug Ford is likely to announce further strict measures to reduce the spread of COVID-19 in the community.  Roumeliotis said on Monday that the restrictions are likely to be aimed at getting citizens to remain at home as much as possible because the majority of COVID-19 cases across the province and including the EOHU’s territory are the result of social gatherings in private homes or from public health directives not being followed in some workplaces.

As of Monday, it did not seem that the Ontario government was considering a curfew like what is presently in effect in Québec.

Roumeliotis said that he had received complaints about a significant number of shoppers travelling to Cornwall over the previous weekend to buy items that are presently available at Ontario stores.  In Québec, stores are presently prohibited from selling non-essential items.  Roumeliotis said he has asked the Ontario government to also temporarily prohibit the sale of non-essential items.

COVID-19 cases across EOHU territory, January 11, 2021

EOHU COVID-19 media briefing, Monday, January 11, 2021.