Ottawa's coronavirus wastewater average is slowly dropping.
City's COVID-19 hospitalizations, test positivity and outbreaks are high and stable.
Three more COVID deaths have been reported in the region.
There's a new wastewater high west of Kingston.
Today's Ottawa update
The average level of coronavirus in Ottawa's wastewater is slowly moving away from the peak of this sixth wave earlier this month, which was also a pandemic high.
The most recent data from April 25 (the bold red line in the graph below) shows the level is still about eight-and-a-half times higher than what it was in early March before the current spike.
Those records don't reflect the first wave of the pandemic when wastewater was not monitored for traces of the virus.
Wastewater is a key indicator of what Ottawa Public Health (OPH) calls a significant COVID-19 wave. As of Wednesday, OPH still considered there to be a high level of COVID in the city and highly recommend people take steps to protect themselves and others.
Thirty-six Ottawa residents are in local hospitals for treatment of active COVID-19, according to Wednesday's OPH update. That number has been rising back to around where it was in mid-February, but changes little from Tuesday.
Four of those patients remain in intensive care.
The hospitalization figures above don't include all patients. For example, they leave out patients admitted for other reasons who then test positive for COVID-19, those admitted for lingering COVID-19 complications, and those transferred from other health units.
When you include patients such as these, the number rises to 128 as of Monday. It, too, has returned to where it was in mid-February, and some hospitals are again having staffing problems.
Cases and outbreaks
Testing strategies have changed under the contagious Omicron variant, which means many new COVID-19 cases aren't reflected in current counts. Public health only tracks and reports outbreaks that occur in health-care settings.'
At 18 per cent, the average positivity rate for those who received PCR tests outside long-term care homes is high and stable. The average inside the homes is high and stable around 10 per cent.
The city's 73 outbreaks is high, which includes 31 retirement home outbreaks — the most among health-care settings.
On Wednesday, OPH reported 243 more cases and the deaths of two people who had COVID, one in their 50s and one in their 80s.
The rolling weekly incidence rate of newly confirmed COVID-19 cases, expressed per 100,000 residents, is around 120.
As of Monday's weekly vaccine update, 92 per cent of Ottawa residents age five and up have at least one COVID-19 vaccine dose and 89 per cent have at least two.
Sixty-two per cent of residents age 12 and up have at least three doses and five per cent have four.
Across the region
Eastern Ontario has the highest regional wastewater average, according to the province's science table.
Wastewater levels are at a record high just west of Kingston, and stable or dropping at sites in that city. In Leeds, Grenville and Lanark (LGL) counties, the signal is rising in Brockville and stable elsewhere. Data available from east of Ottawa is now a week old.
Western Quebec has 105 local COVID-19 hospitalizations, including patients no longer considered active cases. Seven are in intensive care.
Eastern Ontario communities outside Ottawa are reporting about 60 COVID-19 hospitalizations. About 10 of them are in intensive care. Neither of those numbers includes Hastings Prince Edward Public Health, which like western Quebec has a different counting method.
Its 23 COVID hospitalizations, which may include people who live outside that region, is high and stable.
Renfrew County reported its 41st COVID death Wednesday, its fourth reported this month.
LGL's local COVID hospitalizations drop from 17 to 14 and its four ICU patients is stable. The Eastern Ontario Health Unit's 16 COVID hospitalizations, 16 per cent test positivity and 12 outbreaks are high and stable.
The Kingston area's hospitalizations are stable; its ICU count rises to seven for the first time in nearly three months.