More than 300 people have now died from COVID-19 in Windsor-Essex, just weeks after the 200th death was recorded.
Eight new deaths were announced by the public health unit on Wednesday, six of which were seniors' home residents, bringing the total to 303.
The region recorded its 200th death just weeks ago on Jan. 8. Two-thirds of those who have died from COVID-19 were residents of long-term care and retirement homes.
Dr. Wajid Ahmed, medical officer of health for the Windsor-Essex County Health Unit, expressed concern over the rising death toll, which is occurring as the region appears to be turning a corner on case counts.
"Death is a lagging indicator, so whatever we're seeing is a result of the cases that we seen at least two to three weeks before. It's unfortunate that we still have these deaths in the community," he said, adding that he hopes to see the number go down after vaccinations are complete at seniors homes.
The health unit also reported 55 new cases of COVID-19 Wednesday, and the number of active cases continued on its recent downward trend, dropping below 1,000.
Asked about the possibility of lifting some pandemic restrictions next month, Ahmed said we'll have to see where the numbers stand but noted that the current case counts remain high.
51 outbreaks active
Of the 55 new cases announced Tuesday, 12 were linked to outbreaks, three were community acquired and nine are close contacts of confirmed cases. The rest are under investigation.
There are 51 outbreaks active in the region.
Five outbreaks were active at hospitals on Wednesday — two at Hotel-Dieu Grace Healthcare and three at Windsor Regional Hospital facilities.
Outbreaks are active at 27 workplaces:
Seven in Leamington's agricultural sector.
Six in Kingsville's agricultural sector.
One in Leamington's food and beverage sector
Four in Windsor's health care and social assistance sector.
One in Kingsville's health care and social assistance sector.
Three in Windsor's manufacturing sector.
One in a retail setting in Windsor.
One in a retail setting in Essex.
One in a retail setting in Lakeshore.
One in a transportation and warehousing setting in Windsor.
One in a transportation and warehousing setting in Essex.
There are 19 active outbreaks at long-term care and retirement facilities:
Franklin Gardens in Leamington with six resident cases and one staff case
Heron Terrace in Windsor with two resident cases and one staff case.
Chartwell Leamington with two resident cases and two staff case.
Regency Park in Windsor with 15 resident cases and nine staff cases.
Chartwell Royal Marquis in Windsor with one resident case and one staff case.
Devonshire Retirement Residence in Windsor, with 47 resident cases and seven staff cases.
Chartwell Royal Oak in Kingsville, with two staff cases.
Rosewood Erie Glen in Leamington, with 40 resident cases and eight staff cases.
Leamington Mennonite Home with seven staff cases.
Augustine Villas in Kingsville, with 65 resident and 18 staff cases.
Sunrise Assisted Living of Windsor, with 15 resident cases and eight staff cases.
Huron Lodge in Windsor, with 47 resident cases and 25 staff cases.
Sun Parlor Home in Leamington with two resident cases and 13 staff cases.
Banwell Gardens Care Centre in Windsor, with 115 resident cases and 64 staff cases.
The Shoreview at Riverside in Windsor, with 30 resident cases and 16 staff cases.
Extendicare Tecumseh, with 90 resident cases and 57 staff cases.
Berkshire Care Centre in Windsor, with 99 resident and 62 staff cases.
The Village at St. Clair in Windsor, with 165 resident cases and 137 staff cases.
Village of Aspen Lake in Tecumseh, with 65 resident cases and 33 staff cases.