At least one of Lambton’s five COVID-19 patients seen at Petrolia’s ER

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Petrolia’s Charlotte Eleanor Englehart Hospital did receive a patient who tested positive for COVID-19.

Over the past three days, five people went to Bluewater Health’s emergency departments in Sarnia and Petrolia with symptoms of the highly-contagious, flu-like virus. They’ve all now tested positive for COVID-19.

Julia Oosterman of Bluewater Health says at least one of the patients was seen by Petrolia doctors and then sent to Sarnia for treatment. Oosterman says Bluewater Health is in the process of setting up a dedicated unit for COVID-19 patients in Sarnia and that is where the county’s cases will be treated at this time.

All of the cases are over the age of 60. It’s not clear at this time if they contracted the virus while travelling or when the were in Lambton County.

Lambton’s Medical Officer of Health, Dr. Sudit Ranade, says the test results had just come back from provincial labs and public health is just beginning its investigation.

Once public health officials have interviewed the patients to determine where they have been in the last 14 days, officials will start contacting their closest contacts and tell them to begin self isolating.

For the past few days, Ranade has said there were likely cases in the community considering the travel between communities like London, Chatham-Kent and Michigan, which all had confirmed cases.

Ranade says Wednesday’s positive cases are  “confirmation of what we were fairly sure of.

“I’m hoping that the fact that we have confirmed cases will be a bit of a kick in the pants for people who haven’t been doing what they are supposed to do.”

The MOH is asking people to strictly follow the physical distancing guidelines of staying two meters from anyone in public, to stay home when you are sick and to wash hands often.

Ranade, in an interview with The Independent Tuesday said there were dozens of test without results yet. The province is opening more labs to process the COVID-19 tests now.