Newswatch COVID-19 Digest: Thursday April 21, 2022

Here are the latest local, regional and national coronavirus headlines (COVID-19) for Thursday, April 21, 2022:

  • Public Health Ontario reported 28 deaths Wednesday to bring the total to 12,661. There are 1,662 people in hospital (all hospitals reporting), 203 in ICU (down three from the previous day) and 92 on a ventilator (up five from the previous day). Although PHO reported 1,073 new cases Wednesday, the statistic is likely lower than the number of infections given the limited testing in Ontario. The total case count is 1,224,534.
  • Canada’s coronavirus case total (as of 9 a.m. April 20) is 3,654,335. The country has 38,429 deaths from the virus – 24 in the Yukon, 22 in the Northwest Territories, seven in Nunavut, 3,036 in British Columbia, 4,141 in Alberta, 1,273 in Saskatchewan, 1,759 in Manitoba, 12,633 in Ontario, 14,714 in Quebec, 378 in New Brunswick, 23 in PEI, 142 in Newfoundland & Labrador and 277 in Nova Scotia.
  • In its Wednesday report, the Leeds, Grenville and Lanark District Health Unit had 10 people in hospital (no change from Tuesday), five in the ICU (no change from Tuesday) and one on a ventilator (one fewer than Tuesday). The number of deaths to date is 98 (one more than Tuesday). There were 31 cases added since Tuesday from limited testing. Local case numbers are normally updated Monday, Wednesday and Friday. Public Health Ontario says the cumulative case count for the region as of Wednesday is 8,161. There are five lab-confirmed outbreaks in congregate care, communal living and other facilities (on fewer than Tuesday). A partial list of active institutional outbreaks.
  • The Eastern Ontario Health Unit area had 15 people in hospital Wednesday (one fewer than Tuesday) with one in the ICU (one fewer than Tuesday). The number of deaths to date is 221 (one more than Tuesday). There are 12 institutional outbreaks (two more than Tuesday). Test positivity from limited testing in high-risk populations is 16.1 per cent (no change from Tuesday) based on 186,672 tests (100 more than Tuesday). Public Health Ontario says the cumulative case total for the region as of Wednesday is 15,019.
  • Vaccines: Ontario 32,461,020 (+40,643, last update April 20); EOHU 468,545 (last update April 20, +812 from previous update April 19); LGL 435,759 (3,782 more than the previous week, last update April 19).
  • Dr. Peter Juni of the Ontario COVID-19 advisory panel believes cases will rise a bit more after holidays like Easter and Passover. But Juni doesn’t believe it will change the trajectory much of the sixth wave.
  • There’s frustration brewing in Newfoundland and Labrador over the availability of COVID-19 rapid tests. In one case, a store worker said it’s disappointing people have to pay out of pocket for the tests or get them through school workers or health care workers they know.
  • As cases increase in Alberta the latest Omicron variant may have levelled off. Health Minister Jason Copping says hospitalizations went up three per cent in the past week but ICU numbers dropped. With the lowest uptake in Canada, the provincial government is planning a third dose campaign.
  • A Swedish research study looking at case-crossover analysis of over 400 young adults found a link to indoor air pollutants and an greater risk of COVID-19 infection. It’s consistent with ecological studies showing places with poorer air quality are likely to have more infections.

Thank you for reading the latest edition of the Newswatch COVID-19 Digest, published Monday to Friday at 6 a.m.