DAN CEARNS, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, for The Standard

KAWARTHA LAKES: The Central East Correctional Centre in Lindsay continues to be in a state of outbreak from COVID-19.
A COVID-19 outbreak at this facility was declared on Tuesday, September 7th. As of press time, there are currently 11 active COVID-19 cases listed in the facility, according to the provincial correctional facility dashboard. At one point, on Sunday, September 12th, there were up to 18 cases confirmed as active in the local jail.

At a virtual press conference on Wednesday, September 15th, Haliburton, Kawartha, Pine Ridge District Health Unit’s (HKPR) medical officer of health, Dr. Natalie Bocking, explained why this outbreak is seeing lower numbers of cases than the previous one, which was declared in May.

“I think there’s a couple of measures [which] were instituted sooner with this outbreak than the last outbreak. There are certainly lessons learned, not just from the previous outbreak at this correctional facility, but also at other facilities across the province,” she said.

Dr. Bocking added, at this time, the health unit is not expecting a “significant increase” of virus cases at the facility moving forward.

So far, all of the cases in this outbreak have been from inmates, with no staff infections recorded. The health unit does not yet have information on what, if any, COVID-19 variants are involved in this outbreak.

“I think it is assumed it is the Delta variant, as greater than 90 percent of cases across the province are assumed to be the Delta variant,” Dr. Bocking explained but noted the health unit will wait for genome sequencing results to be available.