No new cases of COVID-19 reported in Waterloo Region for first time since mid-March
KITCHENER -- Region of Waterloo Public Health officials reported no new cases of COVID-19 for the first time in more than four months on Tuesday, a sign that the region could be through the first wave of the virus.
When asked during a Tuesday media briefing, Waterloo Region's Acting Medical Officer of Health Dr. Hsiu-Li Wang said "it looks like" we have made it through.
"It looks like it, it looks like we're out of the first wave, yes," she said with a smile.
Tuesday is actually the second day in a row that the region reported no new cases, however public health officials reported the increase in cases from the weekend on Monday.
There have been a handful of days on which officials have only reported one new case, but the last time the case total didn't move was on March 15, the region's COVID-19 dashboard shows.
The number of COVID-19 cases in Waterloo Region by reported date. On July 28, officials reported no cases for the first time since March 15. (Source: Region of Waterloo)
The total remained at 1,384, a number that includes 1,224 resolved cases and 119 deaths.
With one new resolved case reported on Tuesday, there are now 41 known active cases in the region.
While two days in a row with no new cases is an encouraging sign, Dr. Wang said we shouldn't expect it to stay that way.
Since Friday, the last day the region updated its testing numbers, there have been 2,599 new tests done, or about 650 per day.
According to the dashboard, 13 people remain in hospital with the virus. To date, 247 people have been hospitalized at some point.
The region's dashboard shows one active outbreak in the region, at Columbia Forest LTC. The outbreak was declared there on July 23, after a staff member tested positive.
More young people testing positive
A new feature on the region's website shows cases by age and reported date. That graph shows that new cases in people aged 20 to 29 are on the rise, while cases in most other age groups appear to be relatively flat.
People in that age range make up 40 per cent of COVID-19 cases reported since May 25, Dr. Wang said during a media briefing on Tuesday.
The number of COVID-19 cases in Waterloo Region by age and reported date. The age group of those 20-29 appears to be rising. (Source: Region of Waterloo)
Dr. Wang said that the largest risk factors at the moment include larger family gatherings, international travel and large social circles.
She reminded the public that a social bubble, which can include up to 10 people, is a fixed number of people, not one that fluctuates based on the day.
She encouraged people to maintain physical distancing with those outside of their bubble.
New Ontario cases largely in Ottawa, Windsor-Essex
Across the province, there were 111 new infections reported on Tuesday. Of those, 47 were reported in Ottawa and in Windsor-Essex.
That's compared to Toronto, which is still in Stage 2 of the province's reopening plan, where officials only reported six new cases.
Most public health units—27 out of 34—reported five or fewer cases of the virus.
Over the past 10 days, Ontario has seen daily case increases of between 103 and 203 cases.
There have been 38,910 cases of COVID-19 reported on the province since the pandemic began. That includes 2,768 deaths and 34,567 recoveries.