Mon. Nov 29th, 2021

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Two unvaccinated people at an outdoor sporting event and an indoor social gathering triggered an outbreak that infected 26 people with COVID-19 within a few weeks and led to the closure of an elementary school, according to Ottawa Public Health.

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The outbreak also swept up 247 people who were identified as close contacts, OPH said in a Twitter post explaining how it happened.

“Please, get vaccinated,” OPH said in the post. “If you show COVID-19 symptoms, get tested immediately.”

The transmission of the virus in schools and sports games illustrated in the example was among young people over 12 years, OPH said. That age group is eligible for vaccination.

The chain began last month with two people not vaccinated, delayed being tested even though they had symptoms of COVID-19, and mingle with other people when they had symptoms.

The outbreak involved 26 people who were identified with COVID-19 over a 23-day period, and the number is still rising, OPH said.

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One of the unvaccinated people was playing an organized sports game outdoors, OPH said. The next day, the person developed symptoms associated with COVID-19. The person delayed being tested and went to school and a social gathering while having symptoms.

The other person was not at the sports match but had COVID-19 symptoms and attended a social event with some of the players for the match, OPH said. This person also delayed being tested.

The eruption also affected five high schools and led to 13 cohorts of students being fired from the school. It also affected a long-term care home, OPH said.

Other factors identified in connection with the outbreak, according to OPH: The players in the unidentified game did not wear masks or keep physical distance; The social gathering was indoors, and mask wearing and physical distance were inconsistent; All those who were confirmed to have COVID-19 had not been fully vaccinated.

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Latest COVID-19 news in Ontario

In Ontario, 321 new cases of COVID-19 were reported Wednesday, according to Health Secretary Christine Elliott.

Among these new cases, 203 people were not fully vaccinated or their vaccination status was unknown, she wrote.

The province reported that nine more people have died from COVID-19 and an additional death was added due to a data cleanup. That brings the total number of deaths since the pandemic began to 9,862.

Across Ontario, 215 people are hospitalized with the disease.

There are 134 people in intensive care units in Ontario, 16 of whom are patients transferred from Saskatchewan, where the hospital system is unable to cope with the increase in COVID-19 cases.

Ottawa has 27 new cases, the province reported Wednesday. The data reported by Ottawa Public Health later in the afternoon often varies slightly because statistics are collected at different times.

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In other regions of the metropolitan area, the health unit Kingston, Frontenac, Lennox and Addington reported 11 new cases. The Eastern Ontario Health Unit reported four new cases, while Leeds, Grenville and Lanark reported a new case. No new cases were reported in Renfrew County.

On the vaccination front, 84 percent of eligible Ontario residents (all ages 12 and up) are fully vaccinated, and 88 percent have one dose, as the province reported.

-More on the way

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