Sharp slide in local COVID-19 cases

Southwestern Public Health reported a substantial decrease in both the number of new cases and the number of ongoing cases it is tracking in Elgin, St. Thomas and Oxford on Wednesday, Jan. 20.

However, the health unit also recorded another death linked to COVID-19, an Oxford man, 83, residing at PeopleCare long-term care home in Tavistock. That brings the Southwestern death toll connected to COVID-19 to 48.

Across the Southwestern region, just 14 new cases were confirmed on Wednesday, down from 31 the previous day. The health unit is now tracking 292 ongoing cases, down from 346.

St. Thomas and area dropped to 41 cases from 52, Aylmer and area to 27 from 38, Bayham to eight from 11 and West Elgin to three from four. Central Elgin increased to seven cases from six, and a new case appeared in Dutton Dunwich.

Southwold remained steady at eight and Malahide at two.

In Oxford, Tillsonburg and area decreased to 82 cases from 87, Norwich to 37 from 41, Woodstock and area to 30 from 43, East Zorra-Tavistock to 13 from 21 and South-West Oxford to eight from nine.

Ingersoll and area remained steady at 13, Zorra at 11 and Blandford-Blenheim at one.

Across the Southwestern region, the infection rate stands at 138.1 per 100,000 of population, down substantially from 163.6 on Tuesday.

Ontario reported 2,655 new confirmed cases of COVID-19 on Wednesday, up from 1,913 on Tuesday.