London

London health care worker tests positive for COVID-19

The woman is a primary health care worker who has not travelled recently

Posted: March 14, 2020

Signs like this one are posted throuhout the region reminding people to help stop the spread of germs during the COVID-19 pandemic. (Kate Bueckert/CBC)

A London woman who works in health care and has no history of travel is one of 22 new patients who has tested positive for COVID-19 in Ontario.

The Ministry of Health released new information Saturday morning showing the number of positive cases has risen to 101.

A positive case from Huron Perth Public Health was also listed. There are no details about where that person is living or if they had travelled in recent weeks. 

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The Middlesex London Health Unit (MLHU) said the London patient is in her 50s and does not work at a hospital.

For privacy reasons, officials would not say where she works or what she does. Primary care could mean anything from a doctor's office to a clinic. 

"The person had contact with about 10 people at one point but we're confident those people are safe. They're in self-isolation and there's no risk beyond the people we've already notified," said Dr. Chris Mackie, officer of health for the MLHU.

He said the woman has mild symptoms of the virus and is also at home in self-isolation.

A dozen other Londoners awaiting test results

Because the woman has no history of travel, health officials are currently trying to determine if she was in contact with someone who had been out of the country. 

"That's still to be determined. From my perspective that doesn't change what we do. We're on the verge of community spread, and we're taking appropriate measures," Mackie said.  

The patient was tested at the London Health Sciences Centre (Paula Duhatschek/CBC)

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The patient was screened at the London Health Sciences Centre but other hospitals are also doing tests.

Mackie said there are currently about a dozen people in the London area who are waiting on test results. 

This is the second case of the coronavirus in London. A Western University student tested positive on Jan. 24 after returning from Wuhan, China. 

Meantime, Western University confirmed Friday that a student studying in Spain was hospitalized in that country after contracting the virus, but is currently recovering. 

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