111 new COVID-19 cases in the London area since Friday, no deaths

The Middlesex-London Health Unit is reporting 111 new COVID-19 cases and no additional deaths since Friday. The Omicron variant is likely associated with a cluster of cases, according to the health unit.

Omicron variant likely associated with recent cases, health unit says

The Middlesex-London Health Unit introduced an interactive game, stress stars and stickers for children aged five to 11 who are now being vaccinated against COVID-19 at the the Western Fair District Agriplex in London, Ont. (Travis Dolynny/CBC)

The Middlesex-London Health Unit (MLHU) is reporting 111 new cases of COVID-19 since Friday, as the seven-day average for daily cases climbed to 29. There were 38 cases reported Saturday, 37 on Sunday and 36 on Monday.

The majority of new cases were among children 11 and younger, which accounted for nearly 27 per cent of total infections. People aged 25 to 29 made up 24 per cent of total cases, equalled by people aged 40 to 64.

So far this month, there have been 205 cases of COVID-19 and no deaths, according to data from the health unit.

There were 52 recoveries posted since Friday, with 255 active cases in the community.

London Health Sciences Centre is reporting 12 patients being treated for COVID-related illnesses at local hospitals on Monday, down one from Friday. There are five or fewer adult patients in critical care, five or fewer with COVID-19 in the Children's Hospital and five or fewer patients in pediatric critical care, according to the hospital network.

Five or fewer staff members have tested positive for the virus and are isolating.

Cases of the Omicron variant possible in London

The MLHU says they are investigating a cluster of COVID-19 cases that shows a strong possibility that the Omicron variant of the virus is in the community.

Health officials announced the findings for cases that were screened positive for a marker for the Omicron variant, flagging S gene target failure. Two travellers who arrived in London from Nigeria in late November tested positive for the virus, though officials are still waiting for the whole genomic sequencing of the samples.

"This situation continues to evolve very quickly, but there is already enough evidence to indicate strongly that the Omicron variant has arrived in our region," said Dr. Alex Summers, Acting Medical Officer of Health for the MLHU.

"While we're still learning about the variant, it's clear that it spreads easily. We recommend people continue to follow public health guidance, especially by getting vaccinated, wearing a mask, maintaining  physical distance and limiting the size of social gatherings."

Through contact tracing, the health unit says at least 30 people are associated with the cluster of suspected Omicron cases and that the number is expected to exceed 100.

Five COVID-19 outbreaks at local schools

Cases among school-aged children climbed since last week, with five schools in an outbreak situation, including:

  • Techumseh Public School (4 cases)
  • St Marguerite d'Youville School (5 cases)
  • Blessed Sacrament Catholic School (2 cases)
  • West Oaks French Immersion Public School (4 cases)
  • St Mary Choir & Orchestra Catholic School (2 cases)

Since Friday, there have been 26 cases associated with public schools in Middlesex-London, including 25 in elementary schools and one in a high school.

Children aged five to 11 are now eligible to get a COVID-19 vaccination. Vaccinations can be booked online at the MLHU website.

A tour of London's vaccination clinic for kids

2 years ago
Duration 1:00
The vaccination centre at the Western Fair District Agriplex has seen over 3,500 children aged 5 to 11 get their first COVID-19 vaccine since they started inoculations on Nov. 26, 2021.

COVID-19 across the region and beyond

Southwestern Public Health reported 85 new COVID-19 cases and one additional death since Friday. There are 202 active cases in Elgin-Oxford, including 55 in St. Thomas, 38 in Tillsonburg, 32 in Woodstock and 27 in Aylmer. Twelve patients remain in hospital with the virus, including four in critical care.

Huron Perth Public Health posted 28 new cases of COVID-19, with 70 ongoing infections in the region.

Meanwhile, Ontario reports 887 new COVID-19 cases across the province. As of Sunday evening, there were 168 people in critical care, the most on a single day since late September.

The seven-day rolling average for daily cases across the province is up to 940.