COVID-19 outbreaks spread in P.E.I. as officials report more than 300 new cases

·2 min read

CHARLOTTETOWN — Officials in Prince Edward Island say the province is now dealing with widespread transmission of COVID-19 as several outbreaks of the disease continue to develop.

Premier Dennis King told reporters Tuesday some of the Island’s most vulnerable populations are being exposed to the disease as it spreads.

“We're not just seeing increased cases, but we're seeing cases across a broad spectrum of the province in a variety of settings,” King said.

Some of the newest outbreaks include child-care facilities, according to chief medical officer Dr. Heather Morrison. Morrison said during a briefing that nine early learning centres across the province have reported outbreaks of the disease, and seven of them were closed Tuesday.

Morrison also said clusters of cases have been found in a long-term care facility and within the population that regularly accesses shelters in the Charlottetown area.

This comes as 304 new cases of COVID-19 were identified on the Island, bringing the number of known active cases in the province to 1,694.

Over the last seven days, P.E.I. has seen an average daily case count of 190 and there are now six people in hospital, including one in intensive care. About 8,500 people are in self-isolation as the result of being positive cases or close contacts.

King said officials haven’t yet been able to determine if the province has reached the “crest” of the current wave of the disease, adding that understanding the nature of the wave would be key to deciding future steps.

“We don't know where we're at in that curve right now,” he said, “...and until we know that, it’s going to be very difficult for us to make unilateral decisions on the way to getting back to normal.”

Morrison echoed the sentiment, saying the province is now trying to slow the spread of the disease rather than stop it outright as it was able to do in previous waves.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Jan. 11, 2022.

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This story was produced with the financial assistance of the Facebook and Canadian Press News Fellowship.

The Canadian Press

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