Local COVID-19 deaths continue to rise

Southwestern Public Health announced three more deaths, all in Oxford, linked to COVID-19 on Tuesday morning, Jan. 12.

They included two deaths at PeopleCare long-term care home in Tavistock, two women, one 96 and one 94, and one woman, 93 from the general population of Oxford.

That brings the total number of deaths linked to COVID-19 in the Southwestern region of Elgin, St. Thomas and Oxford to 35.

Two major outbreaks are underway in Oxford. At Maple Manor in Tillsonburg, 80 residents and 48 staff were reported to have tested positive so far as of Tuesday morning, Jan. 12. Eleven more residents have died.

At PeopleCare, 39 residents and 32 staff had tested positive for COVID-19 as of Tuesday morning. With the deaths added Tuesday, that brought the total number to five, all residents.

Across the region, 64 new cases were confirmed on Tuesday, up from 27 the previous day. However, the total number of ongoing cases being tracked by the health unit decreased to 365 from 383.

St. Thomas and area dropped to 63 cases Tuesday, down from 68 Monday, Bayham to nine from 11, Southwold to two from three, Dutton Dunwich to one from three and Malahide to one from two.

Aylmer and area remained steady at 37 cases, while Central Elgin increased to seven from six and West Elgin to four from three.

In Oxford, Tillsonburg and area rose to 123 cases from 119 and Norwich to 35 from 28. Woodstock and area decreased to 37 cases from 46, East Zorra-Tavistock to 16 from 25 and Ingersoll and area to 13 from 15.

South-West Oxford remained steady at nine cases, Zorra at seven and Blandford-Blenheim at one.

The infection rate across the Southwestern region now stands at 172.6 per 100,000 of population, down from 181.1 on Monday.

Across Ontario, 1,934 new cases of COVID-19 were reported on Tuesday morning, down sharply from the previous day’s 3,338.