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COVID-19: Here's the situation in the Sault this week (updated)

Region's 21st COVID-related death reported this week; currently 637 active cases, nine hospitalizations in the region as of 3:50 p.m. Friday
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New daily cases in the province ranged this week between a high of 13,362 and a low of 9,706 *note: not all symptomatic people are being tested in accordance with new Ontario guidelines.

Immunocompromised Ontarians can book appointments for a fourth dose of a COVID-19 vaccine starting this morning.

Ontario's chief medical officer of health, Dr. Kieran Moore, says appointments for moderately to severely immunocompromised people will be made available through the provincial vaccine contact centre at 8 a.m.

Moore said the move aims to provide further protection for vulnerable populations.

Here's the latest on new cases in Algoma

As of 2:45 p.m., Algoma Public Health has not reported any new cases of COVID-19.

The latest cases of the virus in the region were reported today.

Here are the latest COVID-19 numbers from Algoma Public Health, updated at 3:30 p.m. on Jan. 13:

  • 220,719 tested
  • 2,863 confirmed *Note: As of Dec. 31, 2021, the province has limited COVID-19 PCR testing to the highest risk populations. Furthermore, some people with mild or asymptomatic infection may not seek testing. Algoma Public Health states that the numbers of confirmed cases are an underestimate of the actual number of people with COVID-19 in the Algoma region.
  • 593 active cases
  • 9 (1) currently hospitalized *Note: the number in brackets is a case in a non-Algoma resident currently in the region.
  • 2,243 resolved
  • 21 deceased

Algoma Public Health is reporting that recent results from additional laboratory testing have detected the following variants of concern in Algoma:

  • B.1.1.7 (Alpha), first detected in the UK
  • B.1.617.2 (Delta), first detected in India
  • P.1 (Gamma), first detected in Brazil
  • B.1.1.529 (Omicron), first detected in South Africa 

Total confirmed cases by area of residence: 

  • 2,388 in Sault Ste. Marie and area
  • 254 in central and east Algoma
  • 116 in Elliot Lake and area
  • 78 in north Algoma

Comparatively, in Chippewa County, which covers Sault Ste. Marie Mich. and surrounding area, the COVID-19 data as of Jan. 12 states (note: case counts have been reset to reflect new reporting format. Cases from March 2020-Dec. 31, 2021: 5,275 total, 4641 recoveries, 69 deaths):

  • 809 cumulative positives 
  • 175 cumulative recovered
  • 4 deaths
  • 17 cases currently hospitalized

Here's the latest on COVID-19 vaccinations in Algoma:

As of 2:30 p.m. on Jan. 12:

  • 234,688 total doses of COVID-19 vaccines have been administered (now including third doses for those eligible)
  • 51.8 per cent of children 5-11 have received at least one dose
  • 83 per cent of youth 12-17 have received at least one dose 
  • 97,949 people have received at least one dose (83.1 per cent of the population or 86.8 per cent of the eligible population)
  • 91,137 people have received two doses
  • 45,573 people have received three doses 

APH reported cases this week:

31 new cases reported on Jan. 9.

Two new hospitalizations, 52 cases reported on Jan. 10

Hospitalizations drop by three, 15 new cases reported on Jan. 11.

Region's 21st COVID-related death, 75 new cases reported on Jan. 12

Hospitalizations up by one, 62 new cases reported on Jan. 13

No new hospitalizations, 48 new cases reported on Jan. 14

Ottawa to go ahead with trucker vaccine mandate after stating it would scrap it

Unvaccinated American truckers will be turned back at the border beginning this weekend.

No foreign trained nurses currently needed at hospital, staffing levels ‘stable’

SAH not on province’s list of 50 hospitals in need of extra help.

COVID-19: Unvaccinated Canadian truckers will not have to quarantine when crossing border: CSBA

New rule will still take effect for American truckers starting this weekend, with drivers being turned away at the border unless they've been inoculated.

Here's Ontario's plan to return to in-person learning

Access to rapid tests, tracking absences among the new measures as students return to classrooms.

WATCH: Minister of education, top doctor give update on return to in-person learning (Jan. 12)

Students return to the classroom Jan. 17.

WATCH: Internationally educated nurses to help with staffing support (Jan. 11)

Hospitalization reporting changing as of Jan.12.

COVID outbreak reported within Sault EMS

"At this point we’re still able to fulfill our regular deployment plan," said Jeff Bowen, Sault EMS deputy chief of operations. "We haven’t had to reduce any ambulances or any numbers.”

Ontario: Schools will resume in-class learning on Jan. 17

The return to in-person learning was also dependent on public health trends and operational considerations.

Sault Area Hospital declares COVID-19 outbreak in emergency department (Jan. 10)

Two staff members have tested positive and are isolating at home.

LETTER: Omicron presents two crucial issues to healthcare, says hospital 

'We are working closely with our community and regional partners,' CEO, Chief of Staff for Sault Area Hospital say

ICU nearing capacity at Sault Area Hospital (Jan. 9)

14 of 17 permanent intensive care unit beds currently in use.

University student frustrated by return to virtual learning

Saultite says COVID-19 restrictions could force her to take a year off from fulfilling her education goals at Brock University.

VIDEO: Father, daughter duo dedicate song to those struggling through isolation

'When the anxiety kicks in, this is our medicine,' says Dustin Jones about new cover song with daughter Jett.

Ontario announces hydro rate relief for those affected by recent health measures

For 21 days starting Jan. 18, electricity prices will be set 24 hours a day at the current off-peak rate of 8.2 cents per kilowatt-hour, which is less than half the cost of the current on-peak rate

More than 40 Sault Area Hospital staff off work after testing positive for COVID-19 (Jan. 7)

SAH redeployed staff to meet challenge, spokesperson says

COVID-19: Ontario introduces grant for small businesses forced to close (Jan. 7)

Eligible businesses include gyms, museums and galleries, tour services and before- and after-school programs.

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About the Author: Megan Pounder

Megan Pounder is a Sault Ste. Marie-based journalist and a member of the Village Media news desk
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