Ottawa's pandemic trends are mostly rising

The capital's coronavirus wastewater average, number of COVID-19 outbreaks, and test positivity rate each continue to increase as it nears the end of September 2022.

Hastings Prince Edward Public Health has its most COVID hospitalizations of 2022

Two people wearing masks cross Sussex Drive in Ottawa in September 2021. (Trevor Pritchard/CBC)

Recent developments:

  • Ottawa's pandemic trends are mostly rising.
  • Its number of COVID-19 outbreaks has doubled in two weeks.
  • Another 5,100 vaccine doses were given to Ottawa residents.
  • The Belleville area has its most COVID hospitalizations of 2022.

The latest Ottawa update


The weekly average level of coronavirus in Ottawa's wastewater has been rising this month.

As of Sept. 25, levels were just less than double where they were at the end of August and about nine times higher than they were at this time last year.

 A bar and line graph of coronavirus wastewater levels since June 2020
Researchers measuring and sharing the amount of novel coronavirus in Ottawa's wastewater found the weekly average most recently peaked July 10. The most recent data is from Sept. 25. (


Twenty-eight Ottawa residents have been admitted to a city hospital with COVID-19, according to OPH's latest update. That's slightly fewer than the last update and generally stable over the last 10 days. 

Two patients are in intensive care.

The hospitalization figures above don't include all patients. For example, they leave out patients admitted for other reasons who then test positive for COVID-19, those admitted for lingering COVID-19 complications, and those transferred from other health units.

The number that includes those kinds of patients dropped from mid-July until the end of August and has risen in September.

A graphic breaking down Ottawa COVID-19 hospitalizations.
Ottawa Public Health has a COVID-19 hospital count that shows all hospital patients who tested positive for COVID, including those admitted for other reasons, and who live in other areas. (Ottawa Public Health)

Tests, outbreaks and cases

Testing strategies changed under the Omicron variant, meaning many COVID-19 cases aren't reflected in current counts. Public health officials now only track and report outbreaks in health-care settings.

Ottawa's test positivity rate has now risen for two weeks, currently sitting at 14 per cent.

There are currently 42 active COVID outbreaks in Ottawa, up from 39 as of the last update. That number has doubled in two weeks and is led by 18 outbreaks in retirement homes.

OPH reported 239 more cases over four days and three more deaths.


About 5,100 COVID vaccine doses were given to Ottawa residents in the last week. The weekly increase has been stable this month.

As of the most recent weekly update, 93 per cent of Ottawa residents age five and up had at least one COVID-19 vaccine dose, 90 per cent had at least two and 60 per cent at least three.

Twenty-three per cent of Ottawans age 12 and over had at least four. Children 12 to 17 are only eligible if they're significantly immunocompromised.

About 7,700 residents under age five have had a first dose, which is about 17 per cent of Ottawa's population of that age group. That's almost 200 more doses over seven days.

Across the region


As of the most recent update, wastewater levels have mixed trends in Leeds, Grenville and Lanark (LGL) counties and are mostly low and stable in the Eastern Ontario Health Unit (EOHU), except for in Morrisburg.

They're stable or rising in Kingston and have been rising since late August in Gatineau.

Data from other areas is out of date or unavailable.

The EOHU's average test positivity also drops from around 17 per cent to about 12 per cent. 

Hospitalizations and deaths

Western Quebec's health authority, CISSSO, reports a stable 73 COVID hospitalizations. There are two COVID patients in intensive care.

Eastern Ontario communities outside Ottawa are reporting about 40 COVID hospitalizations, 10 of them in intensive care. The Kingston area makes up roughly half of those numbers.

That count doesn't include Hastings Prince Edward (HPE) Public Health, which has a different counting method. It is reporting a rising 42 COVID hospitalizations — its most of 2022 — with three intensive care patients and its 83rd COVID death.

LGL reported its 118th overall COVID death in its weekly Tuesday update. It has now reported 53 COVID deaths in 2022, equalling its number for 2020.

The EOHU reports its 258th total COVID death and the Kingston area, its 60th of 2022 and 82nd overall.

Health authorities in eastern Ontario and western Quebec have reported more COVID deaths in 2022 than either 2020 or 2021.

The 2022 total is nearing 750 victims, compared to about 600 in 2020 and 500 in 2021.


Across eastern Ontario, between 81 and 92 per cent of residents age five and up have received at least two vaccine doses and between 52 and 64 per cent of those residents have had at least three.