KITCHENER -- Region of Waterloo Public Health has linked 11 cases of COVID-19 to a place of worship, prompting officials to declare an outbreak.

The region's online dashboard shows that the cases were connected to an event held in one of these settings.

This is the first outbreak that public health officials have declared at a place of worship in Waterloo Region. No further information was provided about the place of worship on the region's website, including its name or its location.

Public health officials said Thursday that disclosing the name of the facility is only necessary if they can't identify high-risk contacts through case and contact management.

The news comes as the region reported 16 new cases of the disease on Wednesday, bringing the total number of local cases to 2,021. That number includes 1,810 resolved cases and 120 deaths.

Taking into account the resolved cases and deaths leaves 91 active cases, which is three fewer than the number reported the day before. Eight of those cases are currently in hospital.

The region also has another 10 active outbreaks:

  • Victoria Place Retirement Residence: one case in staff
  • The Village at University Gates LTC: one case in staff
  • Sunnyside Home LTC – Castle Kilbride Unit: one case in staff
  • Stirling Height LTC: one case in a resident
  • Doon Village RH: one case in a resident
  • Fairview Mennonite LTC: one case in a resident
  • Conestoga Lodge RH: two cases in staff
  • Congregate setting four: six total cases
  • Wilfrid Laurier University: 19 total cases

On Wednesday morning, provincial officials reported another 790 new infections, a slight decrease from the day before when officials recorded 821.

As has been the case in recent weeks, most of the cases were found in Ontario's four COVID-19 hotspot areas.

Toronto accounted for 321 cases, Peel Region for 127, York Region for 76 and Ottawa for 57.

There was also a spike in the number of deaths on Wednesday, when Ontario public health officials reported nine new COVID-19-related fatalities. That brings the total number of deaths related to the disease to 3,062.

There have been 66,686 cases of COVID-19 since the pandemic began. Of those, 57,325 cases have been resolved.

This is a breaking news update. More to come…