Sudbury’s health unit urges residents to help lessen the impact of the fourth wave

·3 min read

Public Health Sudbury & Districts and urging residents of the Sudbury and Manitoulin districts to take every action within their control to lessen the impact of the fourth wave of COVID-19.

“Reaching the goal of 90 per cent of eligible people being fully vaccinated against the virus is critically important to prevent potential impacts on school or businesses, and to protect the capacity of our healthcare system,” Medical Officer of Health Dr. Penny Sutcliffe said in a release.

“With the official start of fall next week and the province requiring proof of vaccination in certain settings, it is the perfect time to get the COVID-19 vaccine if you have not already done so.”

Dr. Sutcliffe said she anticipates the fall and winter months will present some challenges based on current modeling and projections.

“Although the negative effects of COVID-19 are felt by everyone in our communities, those working in health care see it on a daily basis. Hats off to our hard-working health care professionals who have pulled out all the stops to be there for us when we most need them,” she said.

“This work does not go unnoticed, and we very much appreciate your dedication. Our local response to a global pandemic is a team effort – all supporting one another.”

The health unit encourages businesses and organizations to review the regulations and guidance released by the Ontario government to support them in implementing proof of vaccination requirements, which take effect on September 22.

“Public Health guidance continues to strongly encourage anyone responsible for a business or organization to ensure that any person who performs work for the business or organization conduct their work remotely unless the nature of their work requires them to be on site at the workplace,” the health unit’s weekly report said.

Although this is not required under current regulations, limiting contact with individuals not part of your immediate household continues to be a key measure in preventing the spread of COVID-19.

“In Sudbury and districts, there have been confirmed breakthrough cases of COVID-19, and in these circumstances, the high-risk close contacts are usually advised to self-isolate and seek testing regardless of whether they are fully vaccinated or not,” said the update.

“This is an additional measure required to reduce the transmission of the COVID-19 virus.”

A breakthrough case is when a fully vaccinated individual tests positive for the virus.

From Sept. 9 to Sept. 15, Sudbury’s health unit reported 39 new cases of COVID-19.

To date, 24 of the 39 cases had a mutation profile commonly associated with a COVID-19 variant of concern.

Public Health identified 334 people as having high-risk close contact with a case of COVID-19 during the reporting period.

Of the 262 local cases reported since June 1, 197 have been among unvaccinated residents, 34 have been among those who have received one dose of the vaccine, and 31 have been among fully vaccinated individuals.

During that same period, there have been eight local hospitalizations among unvaccinated individuals and partially vaccinated individuals.

“Please note that data on case counts by vaccination status are preliminary – and highly subject to change,” the report said.

“Comparing cumulative numbers from week to week may lead to incorrect estimates of case counts by vaccination status for the previous seven days.”

A total of 291,090 doses of the COVID-19 vaccine have been administered in the Sudbury area.

So far, 151,585 people have received their first dose and 139,505 people are fully vaccinated.

Overall, 86.3 per cent of residents aged 12 and over have received their first dose of the vaccine compared to 84.4 of eligible Ontario residents.

Second doses have been received by 79.9 per cent of eligible individuals in the region.

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Twitter: @SudburyStar

Colleen Romaniuk, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, The Sudbury Star

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