38 Local Agri-farm Workers Test Positive For COVID-19 As Of Wednesday

Wednesday June 10th, 2020

Posted at 9:13am

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Last updated: Wednesday June 10th, 10:07am

The Windsor Essex County Health Unit has confirmed 38 additional cases of COVID-19 as of Wednesday, bringing the local total to 1,104. They say 656 people locally have recovered.

Cases increased from 1,066 on Tuesday June 9th to 1,104 on Wednesday June 10th.

Health Unit CEO Theresa Marentette says all 38 of Wednesday’s new cases are workers in the agri-farms sector.

The Health Unit says there have been no additional deaths due to COVID-19 as of Wednesday and the local death toll stands at 67.

Country Village Homes, a long-term care home in Woodslee, is once again under outbreak after one staff member tested positive for COVID-19.

The Health Unit said last week they will no longer be providing the number of total tests conducted and the number of new pending tests each day due to the province’s expanded testing strategy. Dr. Ahmed said the reason for this is that testing is conducted “in different settings, which is not directly reported to public health.”

Declaring Outbreaks

Dr. Wajid Ahmed, Medical Officer of Health says the Ministry of Health does not have a policy to declare workplaces under outbreak the same way they do with long-term care settings, but the Health Unit will now begin to declare a workplace “under outbreak” when two or more workers contract COVID-19.

Dr. Ahmed says the Health Unit will soon list businesses under outbreak on their website.

He says some of the factors for declaring an outbreak will include whether or not workers acquired COVID-19 in the workplace, or acquired it elsewhere and just happen to be employees, along with whether or not a worker works independently or is in contact with other workers and the public.

Dr. Ahmed says if a workplace is putting the public or its staff at risk, the Health Unit will shut down the business down until the infection is under control.

But he says not all businesses on the list will be automatically shut down, as the Health Unit would recommend strong infection control and prevention measures to employers including cleaning and disinfecting work areas. “If employers want to go above and beyond and take extra steps such as shutting down their businesses for some time, that’s entirely up to them,” he said.

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