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Algoma Public Health warns of increased risk of COVID-19 in the area

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Officials at Algoma Public Health said Thursday that there is an alarming trend in high risk COVID-19 cases across Algoma over the past week.

Across the Algoma district, health unit officials said the weekly incidence of new high-risk cases has increased by more than 50 per cent.

"Early signals indicate increased transmission of COVID-19 in the region," the health unit said in a news release.

"Residents are reminded to continue to take the necessary precautions to reduce the risk of contracting and spreading COVID-19."

There has also been an increase in hospitalizations and outbreaks in high-risk settings.

“To put ourselves in the best position to reduce COVID-19 transmission and this trend, it is recommended that we remain committed to practicing the COVID-19 precautions that have helped keep us safe throughout the pandemic,” Dr. John Tuinema, acting medical officer of health, said in the release.

“Although rising cases are not unexpected in the fall, we must continue to take precautions every day to protect those at home and in the community and to protect our healthcare resources, especially this thanksgiving weekend.”

It is important to note that while a previous COVID-19 infection may provide some degree of short-term immunity, immunity does decrease over time and a person’s risk of severe illness may also increase with each re-infection. With the Omicron sub-variants circulating in Algoma, vaccination continues to be one of the best ways to protect ourselves from severe illness, hospitalization, and death, especially if at higher-risk for severe outcomes from COVID-19 infection (from Public Health Ontario).

To minimize the risk, Algoma Public Health suggests staying up-to-date on vaccinations, keeping indoor spaces well ventilated, physical distancing, handwashing, wearing a well-fitted mask in indoors or crowded spaces (including outdoors) and rapid antigen testing and screening for symptoms.

There are vaccine opportunities available in the region, if you live in Sault Ste. Marie and area, Central and East Algoma, please visit review avaialable vaccine clinics in Algoma.

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