With an increase of COVID-19 case numbers locally, residents may be wondering if we’ll enter into a stronger tier of COVID-19 restrictions soon, with the potential of a further lockdown.

However, Medical Officer of Health with the Northwestern Health Unit, Dr. Kit Young Hoon, says in her opinion, the region’s restrictions are where they should be.

“We’ve been monitoring statistics closely to see whether we need to go into lockdown. We will continue to do so. At this time, the red level does make sense for our catchment area. But that will be reassessed every week based on COVID-19 cases. At this time, our statistics have put us in the red.”

The Northwestern Health Unit’s level of COVID-19 restrictions increased to the Red-Control tier of Keeping Ontario Safe and Open framework on March 15.

Ontario says a public health unit region must remain in their level of COVID-19 restrictions for two weeks after moving into a new tier of restrictions before they can move down a tier with loosened restrictions. But the region can be moved further into lockdown with more restrictions at any moment.

Moving into a stronger tier of restrictions would mean moving from the Red-Control level to the Grey-Lockdown level of restrictions, which would include further limits on any indoor events or gatherings, and the closure of in-person restaurant services, fitness facilities and childcare services.

Young Hoon and health unit staff are continuing to ask all residents to only go out for essential reasons, such as work, school, essential shopping, healthcare or exercise.

Anyone with COVID-19 symptoms, or who has been in contact with a positive case, is asked to self-isolate, get tested and remain in isolation until your test results are known.

For more information:
Vaccine eligibility expands to those 75 and older
COVID-19: Ontario enters third wave, experts say