March 14, 2020
Klassen, Medical Officer of Health for Huron Perth Public Health, is confirming
the first case of COVID-19 in the Huron-Perth region. The 64-year-old male
presented to the emergency department at St. Marys Memorial Hospital on the
evening of March 12 with symptoms unrelated to COVID-19. The patient’s
condition changed in the emergency department and it was identified that
COVID-19 should be considered, so testing and precautions were initiated
immediately. He was later transferred to Stratford General Hospital.
patient recently travelled to Mexico, returning home on March 2. When the
patient began feeling sick with unrelated illness on March 7, he began
self-isolating at home. Currently the patient is in Stratford General Hospital
in serious condition.
Perth Public Health continues to work with our local health system partners to
identify all known contacts who may have been potentially exposed to the virus and
assess any potential health risk. “We are in the process of conducting case and contact management
for this patient and we will continue to update the community as more details
are available,” says Dr. Klassen.
confirmed case in our area is not unexpected given the transmission of this
virus globally,” says Dr. Klassen. “Although it is concerning to have a
confirmed case, it’s important to remember that as a community and as a health
system, we have been preparing for COVID-19. Our focus is on breaking the chain
of transmission to limit the spread of infection. The risk to Huron-Perth
residents remains low.”
Current recommendations for residents
- At this time, the virus is not circulating locally.
However, this is a rapidly changing situation requiring that the community and
individuals be prepared for potential wider spread of the infection in the
- The Public Health Agency of Canada and the Ontario Ministry
of Health are advising all travellers to monitor their health for fever, cough,
and difficulty breathing for 14 days after arriving back in Canada. If symptoms
develop within 14 days, returning travellers are directed to self-isolate as
quickly as possible and immediately call their health care provider or public
- Symptoms of COVID-19 can range from mild to severe and
include fever, cough, or difficulty breathing (shortness of breath).
Who should be tested for COVID-19?
Testing is only being considered for high-risk individuals, including:
contacts of confirmed cases, until community transmission is confirmed
admitted to hospital with acute respiratory illness
care workers with acute respiratory illness
with acute respiratory who reside in long-term care homes and retirement
with acute respiratory illness who reside in other institutions and as
directed by local public health
care workers as part of a health care institutional outbreak and as
directed by local public health.
If you are experiencing mild respiratory symptoms, you are advised to
stay home and self-isolate and testing is not required. If you have additional questions, contact your healthcare provider or
public health by phone.
For more information
HPHA’s hospitals remains a safe place for patients and the public.
We are taking every possible step to ensure a safe work and patient care
environment. All hospitals sites are
open and continue to offer care.
Patients will continue to be screened at all points of patient