Medical Officer of Health “pleasantly surprised” by decrease in new cases; pregnant individuals now eligible for vaccination

Natascha Wood
Nation Valley News

EASTERN ONTARIO — In his twice-weekly media briefing on April 26th, Eastern Ontario Medical Officer of Health Dr Paul Roumeliotis provided updates on the latest COVID-19 developments in the region, reporting that there have been 52 new cases added over the weekend. 24 were in Prescott-Russell, 10 were in SD&G, and 18 were in Cornwall. There are now 34 patients hospitalized with COVID-19 and six in the ICU. Eastern Ontario also recorded four more deaths since Thursday, April 23rd, bringing the region’s death toll to 100.

While the daily increase in cases remains high for the region, the numbers have improved greatly from previous weeks, when the EOHU added more than a hundred cases. However, hospital admissions are increasing. Should these numbers continue to drop, Roumeliotis anticipates being able to reopen schools by mid-May.

There are seven outbreaks ongoing in Eastern Ontario, a drastic decrease by ten since Thursday. Congregate living outbreaks are in St-Joseph’s Continuing Care Centre – Complex Continuing Care side, Caressant Care Nursing Home, Open Hands – Gage Street, Open Hands – Second Street, Residence St- Mathieu, Community Living-Lasalle, and Residence Cartier. All school outbreaks have been declared over.

The Doctor went on to provide an update on the status of the vaccination rollout as it comes to the end of its fourth month. As of today, 53,794 doses have been administered within the EOHU’s jurisdiction, most of which are first doses, with another 58,000 doses projected to be administered by the end of May.

Pregnant individuals are now eligible to register for vaccination appointments in the ICU. This comes following reports from the Ministry of Health that pregnant individuals with no underlying conditions are being admitted to hospital in higher numbers than before. Pregnant people are encouraged to book their vaccination appointment via the provincial booking system, or by calling the provincial call centre at 1-833-943-3900.

The six pharmacies administering vaccines in Eastern Ontario have now exhausted their supply of 2,200 AstraZeneca doses and are now awaiting another delivery. There are, however, another 57 eligible pharmacies that are prepared with storage fridges to begin vaccinating when supply becomes available. With AstraZeneca deliveries delayed, it is unclear when that will be.

Finally, the EOHU will be holding a one-day vaccination clinic at the Morrisburg Arena in South Dundas on May 10th. Roumeliotis says he expects that the clinic will be attended by at least 500 individuals.

Scroll down to share this article. Scroll down to search Scroll down to comment.