Lambton Meadowview Villa in Petrolia. Photo courtesy of lambtoncares.caLambton Meadowview Villa in Petrolia. Photo courtesy of

Sarnia-Lambton COVID-19 cases increase, second institutional outbreak declared

Sarnia-Lambton's COVID-19 case count increased by nine Thursday morning and a second institutional outbreak is being investigated.

The number of confirmed cases locally is now at 128 but the number of deaths remained at 11.

Lambton Medical Officer of Health Dr. Sudit Ranade said they're investigating an outbreak at Petrolia's Meadowview Villa, confirmed Wednesday night.

He told Sue Storr on CHOK (103.9 FM, 1070 AM) that it's not surprising a staff member at the county-run home for the aged tested positive, as opposed to a resident.

"In fact, that's something we would more likely expect," said Dr. Ranade. "With access restrictions, the residents have not really been leaving or seeing many people but staff come in and out of the building. They're going about their lives, they're interacting with their family members who have lives and who are interacting with others. So, that's probably a primary way in which we would expect COVID-19 to be introduced into a home which makes it that much more important that people who are symptomatic do not work."

Dr. Ranade said they're actively on the lookout for residents who might be infected because then the goal would be to isolate them in a specific area or keep the staff working with them consistently.

Lambton Meadowview Villa is the second home in the county where an outbreak has been declared.

There have been 23 cases confirmed at Sarnia's Landmark Village retirement home, seven staff and 16 residents, and six of the county's 11 deaths are linked to that facility.

Lambton Public Health also reported Thursday morning that six more people have recovered from the virus for a total of 41.

Overall, 770 tests have been conducted in Sarnia-Lambton, and 602 (or 82 per cent) have come back negative.

Bluewater Health reported Thursday that 23 patients are still in hospital with the virus, and 15 are suspected of having it with tests pending. -With files from Sue Storr

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