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Recent respiratory progress holds steady in Ottawa

Kelly Hanselman, left, and her daughter Kate pose for a photo in cutouts in the side of the ice slide hill at Winterlude's Snowflake Kingdom in Gatineau, Que., on Saturday. (Justin Tang/The Canadian Press - image credit)
Kelly Hanselman, left, and her daughter Kate pose for a photo in cutouts in the side of the ice slide hill at Winterlude's Snowflake Kingdom in Gatineau, Que., on Saturday. (Justin Tang/The Canadian Press - image credit)

Recent developments:

  • Ottawa's COVID-19 numbers remain moderate.

  • Some flu signals are still very high.

  • RSV trends are stable and low to moderate.

  • Nine more COVID deaths have been reported locally.

The latest

It's a generally stable weekly respiratory update from Ottawa Public Health (OPH).

Key COVID-19 and RSV numbers are mostly moderate. Flu trends are either moderate (test positivity and outbreaks) or very high (hospitalizations and wastewater readings).

Experts recommend people cover coughs, wear masks, keep hands and often-touched surfaces clean, stay home when sick and keep up with COVID and flu vaccines to help protect themselves and vulnerable people.

OPH says the city's health-care institutions remain at high risk from respiratory illnesses, as they have been since the end of August. This will be the case until respiratory trends are low again.

In Ottawa

Spread

Ottawa's recent coronavirus wastewater average, as of Feb. 5, had been falling for about three weeks. The last time it was around this reading was at the end of October.

OPH says the wastewater signal drops to moderate.

Researchers have measured and shared the amount of novel coronavirus in Ottawa's wastewater since June 2020. This is the data for the last year.
Researchers have measured and shared the amount of novel coronavirus in Ottawa's wastewater since June 2020. This is the data for the last year.

Researchers have measured and shared the amount of novel coronavirus in Ottawa's wastewater since June 2020. This is the data for the last year. (613covid.ca)

The weekly average test positivity rate in the city remains at 12 per cent, which OPH also considers moderate.

Hospitalizations, outbreaks, vaccines and deaths

The average number of Ottawa residents in local hospitals for COVID-19 is a stable 38 over the last week.

separate wider count, which includes patients who tested positive for COVID after being admitted for other reasons, were admitted for lingering COVID complications or were transferred from other health units, has edged downward again.

Ottawa Public Health has a COVID-19 hospital count that shows all hospital patients who tested positive for COVID, including those admitted for other reasons and who live in other areas.
Ottawa Public Health has a COVID-19 hospital count that shows all hospital patients who tested positive for COVID, including those admitted for other reasons and who live in other areas.

Ottawa Public Health has a COVID-19 hospital count that shows all hospital patients who tested positive for COVID, including those admitted for other reasons and who live in other areas. (Ottawa Public Health)

OPH considers the number of new COVID-related hospitalizations in the city — 40 — as moderate.

The active COVID outbreak count is down to 21, mostly in long-term care or retirement homes. There is a low number of new outbreaks.

The health unit reported 144 more COVID cases and five more COVID deaths in the last week. All victims were people age 80 or above.

OPH's latest COVID vaccination update says 22 per cent of eligible residents have had the latest vaccine since the rollout started in mid-September 2023. This does not account for immunity from an infection.

Ottawa Public Health's data on how many people in different age groups have the latest COVID-19 vaccine. It rolled out wide to the general public at the end of October.
Ottawa Public Health's data on how many people in different age groups have the latest COVID-19 vaccine. It rolled out wide to the general public at the end of October.

Ottawa Public Health's data on how many people in different age groups have the latest COVID-19 vaccine. It rolled out wide to the general public at the end of October. (Ottawa Public Health)

After nearly four years, OPH said it is also ending its COVID-specific dashboard at some point this month. Much of the information is now reflected in OPH's respiratory updates. OPH said COVID open data will continue to be updated.

Across the region

The Kingston area's health unit says it's also in the midst of a high-risk time for respiratory illness.

Its COVID-19 and RSV pictures are stable while flu stats are dropping. Its only two categories seen as very high are the COVID wastewater level and the number of flu outbreaks.

The Eastern Ontario Health Unit (EOHU)'s big-picture assessment rates the overall respiratory risk as moderate and stable.

Hastings Prince Edward (HPE) Public Health, like Ottawa, gives a weekly COVID case hospital average. That is stable at nine. Flu activity there is seen as low.

Western Quebec drops to 42 hospital patients who have tested positive for COVID.

The province reports two more deaths there, as does HPE for its area.

Data for Leeds, Grenville and Lanark counties goes up to Jan. 28, when its trends were generally dropping. Renfrew County's next update is expected Thursday.