COVID-19 in Sudbury & districts: Your weekly update December 10, 2020

Reporting period: Thursday, December 3, to Wednesday, December 9, 2020.

December 10, 2020 — The following is a summary of how the status of COVID-19 has changed in Public Health Sudbury & Districts’ service area over the last seven days up to end of day December 9, 2020: 10 new cases, 10 cases were resolved, 0 deaths occurred. At end of day December 9, 2020, there were 8 active cases in our service area, all of whom are self-isolating.

Since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, there have been a total of 242 local cases of which 234 are resolved, and two people have died in our service area.

Trends in the past seven days

Of the 10 new cases in our service area, 7 were close contacts of confirmed cases, while 1 was travel-related, and 1 was associated with an outbreak. This means that Public Health identified how these people were exposed to COVID-19 and was able to take quick action to prevent further spread. The source of exposure remains unknown for 1 case.

Five (5) of the cases were from Greater Sudbury, while the other 5 reside in Manitoulin District.

By end of day on December 9, contact tracing information was available for all 10 of the new cases. Through our investigation, we identified 141 people who had high-risk close contacts with these cases. That is an average of 14 high-risk close contacts per case, up from 6 contacts per case on average last week. Public Health follows up directly and regularly with every high-risk close contact to monitor them for symptoms, ensure they are self-isolating, and make recommendations for testing according to provincial guidance.

The 7-day incidence rate was 5.0 new cases per 100 000 population (compared to 2.5 for the previous 7 days); the percent positivity was 0.5% (compared to 0.3% for the previous 7 days).

For the period of December 2 to December 8, the effective reproductive number (Rt) was 1.0 for both Northern Ontario and Ontario overall.

As of Monday, November 16, 2020, at 12:01 a.m. Public Health Sudbury & Districts is in the “Yellow-Protect” category of the provincial COVID-19 response framework (Government of Ontario). Strengthened public health measures are in effect in our service area to help control the spread of COVID-19. Being in the “Yellow-Protect” zone also serves as a signal to our communities that we are going in the wrong direction and that we must recommit to public health measures.

Stay COVID-safe

Finishing up your holiday shopping? When visiting your favourite local stores, stay COVID-safe by maintaining physical distance, wearing a mask, and sanitizing your hands often. Delay your shopping if you are feeling unwell. Be patient, be kind, and be COVID-safe while you shop.

Thinking about travel for the holidays? Avoid nonessential travel and consider celebrations at home instead. For those who must travel, plan ahead to reduce the risk of spreading COVID-19 as much as possible. In the two weeks leading up to your trip, make an extra effort to practise public health measures.

Find ways to celebrate the holiday season safely. Stick with members of your household for in-person celebrations. Consider sharing a virtual meal or tradition with others. If you must see people you do not live with, wear a mask the entire time.

Loneliness can be difficult, especially over the holidays. Find ways to safely include those who are at greater risk of COVID-19. Connect using technology, make a phone call, create a video, or send a note to let your loved ones know you are thinking of them.

Remember, people who are affected by COVID-19 need support and compassion. We encourage everyone to be supportive, respectful, and treat everyone with dignity.

What’s new

Watch for our ‘Tis the Season to be COVID-safe messaging on social media, radio, and on billboards around Greater Sudbury in the coming weeks.

In case you missed it, watch a special message about COVID-19 from Medical Officers of Health across Northern Ontario at youtube.com/watch?v=XGWBL6gIdmg

Message from Dr. Penny Sutcliffe, Medical Officer of Health

Happy Hanukkah to those of you celebrating! Wishing your family peace and light this season. With the holidays upon us and just one week until schools let out for winter break, it is more important than ever to be mindful of our actions and take steps to be COVID-safe. Keep in mind that your actions protect the community. Think about how you can celebrate with loved ones in a way that protects everyone. Avoid nonessential travel, and if you must go, limit your activities as much as possible for the two weeks before you leave and when you return. With a little effort, and a lot of kindness, we can make the most of this holiday season together!

Regular updates

Visit phsd.ca/COVID-19/data for regular updates about COVID-19 testing, confirmed cases, as well as outbreaks and potential exposures in Greater Sudbury, the District of Sudbury, and the District of Manitoulin. In addition, a detailed epidemiology summary is posted Mondays and Thursdays that includes information about cases over time, case characteristics, probable exposures, case outcomes, testing, and outbreaks in facilities.

For more information or if you have questions, please visit phsd.ca/COVID-19 or call Public Health Sudbury & Districts at 705.522.9200 (toll-free 1.866.522.9200).