Lambton’s second wave worse than first

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This graph shows the number of cases reported daily and illustrates how the curve in Lambton is climbing.

Twenty-four cases reported Wednesday

Lambton Public Health is reporting an unwelcome record – 24 people testing positive for COVID-19 Wednesday.

That’s the highest number of cases reported in Lambton in a single day since the pandemic began.

Public health officials say 92 people are actively ill with COVID-19 – up from 73 yesterday. Eight people have recovered. There are still seven workplace outbreaks in Lambton with 26 people in total ill. There are now two people in hospital because of the virus.

During the first wave of the pandemic, the local health unit statistics show the most active week for cases was from Sat. March 28 to Sat. April 4. Sixty-eight people reported positive for the virus at that time.

Seventy-three people have tested positive for COVID-19 in Lambton since Friday. There have been 102 people confirmed ill since last week at this time.

The entire province will be locked down Boxing Day to help stop the spread of COVID-19 as the virus spreads quickly throughout Ontario. The province reported 2,408 more Ontarians tested positive for COVID-19 today – and 41 people died yesterday from the virus.

The situation in Lambton has changed drastically in the last two weeks. The county had been in the yellow-protect zone of the province’s reopening framework, however with an incident rate of 56 people per 100,000 now and “repeated outbreaks in multiple settings” Lambton would likely be in the red or control stage – the last level before lockdown.

Monday, Dr. Sudit Ranade told reporters the heavier case load is taxing resources at the health unit.

“We’ve had to significantly change some of the way that we do things in order to manage these cases and contacts, because there’s so many of them,” says Ranade.

Additional staff has been brought in on weekends to help with the climbing caseload and they’ve changed the level of contact they have with people who test positive.

“We had been calling people to let them know that their period of isolation is over, but it’s dead now we’re going to have to just give them a date, and say, that’s when it is…after that you can go to your regular activity.

“We need to re prioritize and focus on making sure that we can get to cases within 24 hours and making sure that they isolate…we’re dropping some of those things that we use to do that we’re both caring and courteous, in order to make sure that we can handle the things that are critical,” says Ranade.

“We had received lots of requests for ‘what’s my result?’…we can no longer support those conversations around whether or not somebody is negative. If that information is not on the portal, and if we have not contacted you, and it has been four or five days since your test, you can presume that it is negative unless we call you.

“I think the main point of it, though, is that we don’t really have the resources right now to support letting people know that their test was negative,” says Ranade.