Newswatch COVID-19 Digest: Thursday February 17, 2022

Here are the latest local, regional and national coronavirus headlines (COVID-19) for Thursday, February 17, 2022:

  • Public Health Ontario reported 46 deaths on Wednesday to bring the total to 12,167. There are 1,403 people in hospital (all hospitals reporting), 364 in ICU (down 20 from the previous day) and 232 on a ventilator (down 11 from the previous day). Although PHO reported 2,532 new cases Wednesday, the statistic is likely lower than the number of infections given the limited testing in Ontario. The total case count is 1,078,610.
  • Canada’s coronavirus case total (as of 9 a.m. Feb. 16) is 3,209,168. The country has 35,679 deaths from the virus – 20 in the Yukon, 17 in the Northwest Territories, five in Nunavut, 2,766 in British Columbia, 3,790 in Alberta, 1,012 in Saskatchewan, 1,637 in Manitoba, 12,120 in Ontario, 13,766 in Quebec, 293 in New Brunswick, 14 in PEI, 57 in Newfoundland & Labrador and 182 in Nova Scotia.
  • Four deaths were reported Wednesday in the Eastern Ontario Health Unit area Wednesday bringing the regional total to 189. There were 11 people in hospital (four fewer than Tuesday) with four in the ICU (no change from Tuesday). There are 11 institutional outbreaks (three fewer than Tuesday). Test positivity from limited testing in high-risk populations is 14.7 per cent (down 1.5 from Tuesday). Public Health Ontario says the cumulative case total for the region as of Wednesday is 13,299.
  • The Akwesasne health department report as of Friday (Feb. 11): 785 cases, seven active, 12 deaths to date.
  • In its Wednesday report, the Leeds, Grenville and Lanark District Health Unit has nine people in hospital (no change from Monday), seven in the ICU (one more than Monday) and zero on a ventilator (no change from Monday). The number of deaths to date is 80 (no change from Monday). There were 70 cases added since Monday but due to limited testing, the number of cases locally is likely higher than what is being reported. Local case numbers are updated Monday, Wednesday and Friday. Public Health Ontario says the cumulative case count for the region as of Wednesday is 6,373. There are 10 lab-confirmed outbreaks in congregate care, communal living and other facilities (four fewer than Monday). A partial list of active institutional outbreaks.
  • Vaccines: Ontario 31,360,818 (+31,735, last update Feb. 16); EOHU 455,843 (last update Feb. 16, +619 from previous update Feb. 15); LGL 161,897 individuals living in LGL with first doses, 155,694 with second doses, 102,084 with third doses. (last update Feb. 13, +305 first doses, +1,349 second doses, +2,359 third doses since previous update Feb. 6).
  • The federal Liberals are defending the invocation of the Emergencies Act and the sweeping powers afforded to police. During question period in the House of Commons Wednesday, Conservative MP Michelle Rampel Garner noted the law hasn’t been used in a previous crisis. The federal public safety minister says progress has already been made with the Ottawa trucker protest since the Emergencies Act was enacted.
  • Protesters blocking a border crossing in Manitoba have packed up and traffic if flowing again through Emerson. No charges and no arrests were made, according to RCMP.
  • The spokeswoman for U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says COVID-19 is moving to a point where it’s no longer a “constant crisis.” Dr. Rochelle Walensky says the federal government is considering a change to its mask guidance in the next few weeks.

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