New COVID outbreaks at Owen Sound hospital, Lucknow LTC home

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New COVID-19 outbreaks have been declared at Owen Sound hospital and at Pinecrest Manor in Lucknow.


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The Grey Bruce Health Unit declared both outbreaks Monday. The hospital outbreak is on 6-2, the medicine unit, and involves three patients, with two staff who tested positive but not technically considered part of the outbreak.

“Unit 6-2 has been closed to visitors, admissions and discharges, and enhanced precautions are in place,” Grey Bruce Health Services said in a release. “No other services at the hospital are impacted by this situation.”

The release said it’s unclear if the staff are linked to the outbreak because of the increasing number of cases in the community, hospital corporation spokeswoman Mary Margaret Crapper said.

Dr. Ian Arra, the Grey-Bruce medical officer of health, said the three patients are asymptomatic, and explained the staff infections have a known link to the community and weren’t infected on Unit 6-2, an investigation revealed so far. The two staff have mild symptoms, he said. Twelve other patients on the floor tested negative.

To date, there have been 128 cases reported in health-care workers who live in Grey-Bruce and who work both in and outside Grey-Bruce.

Meanwhile, rising local cases, not the outbreak itself, prompted Grey Bruce Health Services to impose new visitor restrictions across the entire hospital corporation, it said.

Now one visitor per patient is allowed, with exceptions in palliative care and for children. Patients with scheduled appointments should come alone too, unless support is required. See


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The outbreak at Pinecrest Manor involves three employees, each with mild respiratory symptoms, Arra said. Two residents with mild symptoms are probable cases and test results are pending. One resident is not vaccinated, he said.

At Rockwood Terrace, where an outbreak was declared by the health unit Dec. 23, 12 residents have been affected, including one who died. Currently there are five active resident cases, including a new one Tuesday. Six resident infections are resolved, Arra said.

Six staff are infected, including two new infections Tuesday, while three staff cases are resolved, Grey County said in its daily update on Rockwood, which it runs.

“All residents are well, improving,” Arra said. All residents are vaccinated, he said.

Vicki’s Sandbox Daycare, in Hanover, has an outbreak, with one resulting cohort dismissed. This outbreak was declared Dec. 23.

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The health unit reported Tuesday it recorded 74 new confirmed cases of COVID-19, nine local COVID patients are in a local hospital, and there are 973 active cases of the pandemic virus in Grey-Bruce.

On Monday the health unit reported 188 new cases — an all-time local high — 10 in hospital and 949 active cases.

The new cases in Tuesday’s report, current as of midnight Monday, included 14 in Owen Sound, 11 in Kincardine, seven in Neyaashiinigmiing, five each in Georgian Bluffs and in Saugeen Shores, four each in South Bruce Peninsula and in Blue Mountains, three each in West Grey and Arran-Elderslie, two each in Grey Highlands, Hanover, Huron-Kinloss, Meaford and Southgate, one each in Brockton, Chatsworth, Saugeen First Nation and South Bruce, and three cases are listed of “unknown” location.


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There have been 4,173 confirmed local cases of the virus since the start of the pandemic almost two years ago. The report said there are two confirmed Omicron variant cases in Grey-Bruce, with indications there are hundreds more uncounted.

There have been 25 Grey-Bruce resident deaths attributed to COVID, the latest being a resident at Rockwood Terrace home for the aged.

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New testing criteria at COVID-19 assessment centres, released by the province Dec. 30, are being implemented at the Owen Sound centre starting Wednesday, Grey Bruce Health Services announced.

The new Ministry of Health criteria aim to ensure those who work and live in high-risk settings, including healthcare workers, can get tested for COVID-19 amid the explosion of Omicron cases.

Now people with mild COVID-19 symptoms who are healthy and vaccinated are asked to stay home, and not get tested. There are exceptions for those at higher risk of illness and vulnerable populations.

Effective Wednesday, Jan. 5, GBHS Assessment Centre will follow these new guidelines, and only test individuals who meet the new eligibility criteria. A full list of those eligible for a COVID-19 PCR test can be found at .

Meanwhile, all elective surgeries are postponed at GBHS, as directed by the province’s chief medical officer of health Monday for pre-scheduled, non-urgent surgeries and procedures.


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“We recognize that this provincial order causes stress for our patients who have been waiting for their elective procedures, and as soon as we are able, we will work to re-book these appointments,” said Gary Sims, GBHS president and CEO, in a news release. “In the meantime, all urgent and emergency surgeries and procedures will be provided, 24/7 as per usual.”

Elective surgeries are expected to resume by Jan. 26. Scheduled endoscopy services are being postponed until at least the beginning of February. The provincial directive does not affect diagnostic imaging such as X-rays, MRIs and CT scans.

All patients with scheduled surgeries and procedures are to be called by their doctor’s office. GBHS is asking patients to wait for instructions rather than calling their doctor or the hospital.

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Owen Sound city hall and the public works building, the Harry Lumley Bayshore Community Centre and the Julie MacArthur Regional Recreation Centre are all closed until Jan. 27, in keeping with the latest provincial pandemic direction.

All city council and committee meetings will be conducted virtually until Jan. 31, including the special council meeting Jan. 7.

City transit will continue but there’s a 10-passenger limit. The Owen Sound and North Grey Union Public Library remains open but with limited capacity. The Tom Thomson Art Gallery will be closed through Jan. 27.

For information on city-related services, visit the City Closures and Services Update on the city’s website at


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Beginning Jan. 11, the Harry Lumley Bayshore Community Centre will be used again at a mass-vaccination clinic for COVID-19 vaccine.

Members of the Owen Sound Attack Major Junior A team rolled up their sleeves for their boosters, administered by Dr. Ian Arra, the medical officer of health in Grey-Bruce, to encourage booster shots.

“I thank the Owen Sound Attack team – players and management and families – for leading by example” said Arra.

Wednesday will see the beginning of the return of the Hockey Hub mass-vaccination centre model in Chesley.

A full list of public health vaccination clinics, with hours and locations, can be found online at .

Adults aged 18 to 59 who require a booster dose as well as children aged five to 11 require an appointment.

Individuals 12 and up who are receiving a first or second dose as well as adults aged 60 and up do not require an appointment.

Over the past seven days, 9,589 doses of COVID-19 vaccine have been administered, bringing to 303,171 the total doses given in Grey-Bruce since vaccines became available.



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