Four new COVID-19 outbreaks in Hamilton

·2 min read

Six patients and one staff member at Hamilton’s Alternate Health Facility have been diagnosed with COVID-19.

All cases are on the sixth floor, according to Hamilton Public Health.

The outbreak at the satellite hospital on King Street, jointly operated by St. Joseph’s Healthcare Hamilton and Hamilton Health Sciences, was one of four new institutional outbreaks announced on Saturday.

One staff member at Extendicare Hamilton, Good Shepherd Women’s Services and Sisters of the Precious Blood also tested positive for COVID-19, triggering outbreak declarations at those locations.

Overall, public health reported 108 new cases of COVID-19 in the city on Saturday, with 46 total active outbreaks.

All but five of the current outbreaks were declared on or after Jan. 1.

The outbreak on the second floor of the Hamilton Health Sciences Alternate Health Facility worsened overnight, with seven new cases added to bring the total to 22.

The city reported no new COVID-related deaths, leaving the total at 232. But a breakdown of the active outbreaks indicates that a sixth resident of Macassa Lodge, a city-run long-term-care home, has died.

City spokesperson Jasmine Graham confirmed that the death toll at Macassa Lodge is now at six.

Graham said she couldn’t comment on this individual case, but said in general case numbers and death totals “are always subject to change and fluctuations” in data reporting as death investigations continue, data is transferred between health units, and cases are linked or unlinked to outbreaks.

As of Saturday morning there were 12 active cases on Six Nations of the Grand River, which raised its COVID-19 alert level and tightened restrictions on Monday in response to increasing cases.

Six Nations Health Services reported 13 new cases over the past seven days. Of the 140 cases on the reserve since the pandemic began, 127 patients recovered and one died.

The Haldimand-Norfolk Health Unit’s COVID-19 information page is offline this weekend while staff transition to a new data reporting system.

On Friday, there were 143 active cases in Haldimand-Norfolk after eight new cases were reported, along with 43 recoveries.

Health unit spokesperson Matt Terry said all long-term-care and retirement residents in Haldimand-Norfolk who want to be immunized against COVID-19 have received their first dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine.

The provincial directive to stop administering first doses outside of those priority populations means some staff members have not yet been vaccinated, Terry said.

Across Ontario there were 2,359 new cases reported Saturday morning, with 52 deaths.

J.P. Antonacci, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, The Hamilton Spectator