Hamilton’s total COVID-19 cases top 494, public health reports three more outbreaks

Hamilton, Ont., reported six more cases of COVID-19 since Friday, for a total of 494 cases during the pandemic.

Four hundred and eighty-nine are confirmed positive cases of coronavirus with five probable cases, according to public health.

The city reported one more death on May 11 — an 82-year-old man from Cardinal Retirement residences who passed away on Saturday.

The city now has 24 deaths connected to COVID-19 as of Monday.

Three more institutional outbreaks were declared on the weekend, including one in which a resident at Blackadar Continuing Care Centre in Dundas tested positive for COVID-19.

Two people at the Rosslyn retirement home near Main and King Street East were also new cases as of Sunday, and an outbreak at Idlewyld Manor on the Mountain was declared after a resident was reported as positive at that facility on Saturday.

St. Joseph’s hospital reported all three outbreaks involving health-care workers at its facilities are now over. The last wrapped up at the Mary Grace unit on Saturday.

The previous outbreaks were with the mental health and addictions program on the West 5th campus and at the clinical teaching unit on the Charlton Campus.

St Joe’s says the units have now re-opened for new admissions after they were closed for two weeks.

The city is reporting eight current outbreaks in total with six at long-term care homes (Heritage Green, Wentworth Lodge, Regina Gardens, Blackadar Continuing Care, Idlewyld Manor, and Dundurn Place Care Centre), one retirement residence (The Rosslyn), and I.H. Mission Services.

Outbreaks at the Hamilton-Wentworth Detention Centre and St. Elizabeth’s Villa retirement home were declared over on the weekend.

The city’s medical officer of health says testing of all residents and staff in Hamilton’s long-term care facilities should be completed by Friday.

On Monday, Dr. Elizabeth Richardson said 96 per cent of tests ordered by the province have been completed.

Richardson said 112 child care staff have also been tested so far. Public health hopes to have tested all city childcare workers by Friday.

The city’s medical officer also elaborated on a number of false-positive tests from Macassa Lodge long-term care home on the Mountain after receiving word from Public Health Ontario Labs in Toronto last week that tests of some residents may have been tainted.

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Richardson said public health learned that there were ten false-positives identified on Friday afternoon and that the city is investigating seven more potential false-positive tests as of the weekend.

“The lab is in the process of redoing all of those tests,” said Richardson, “If they turn up negative as well, it will also impact the outbreak data as well as the total number of cases.”

Hamilton hospitals have 19 patients in care units — 13 at Hamilton Health Sciences and six at St. Joseph’s hospitals.

Seventy-three of the region’s cases have been connected to residents or patients in an institutional outbreak.

Brant County reports 1 new COVID-19 case

Brant County’s health unit reported two new cases of COVID-19 since Friday.  The region has 102 confirmed cases with six people hospitalized as of May 11.

The county has three outbreaks at Briarwood Gardens retirement home, Telfer Place long-term care and St. Joseph’s Lifecare Centre.

The region has three deaths and 85 resolved cases.

Questions about COVID-19? Here are some things you need to know:

Health officials caution against all international travel. Returning travellers are legally obligated to self-isolate for 14 days, beginning March 26, in case they develop symptoms and to prevent spreading the virus to others. Some provinces and territories have also implemented additional recommendations or enforcement measures to ensure those returning to the area self-isolate.

Symptoms can include fever, cough and difficulty breathing — very similar to a cold or flu. Some people can develop a more severe illness. People most at risk of this include older adults and people with severe chronic medical conditions like heart, lung or kidney disease. If you develop symptoms, contact public health authorities.

To prevent the virus from spreading, experts recommend frequent handwashing and coughing into your sleeve. They also recommend minimizing contact with others, staying home as much as possible and maintaining a distance of two metres from other people if you go out.

For full COVID-19 coverage from Global News, click here.

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