KAWARTHA LAKES-For the first time since March, the local health unit is reporting no new local COVID-19 cases.
Today marks the first time since March 23, 2021 that the Haliburton, Kawartha, Pine Ridge District Health Unit (HKPR) is reporting zero new cases of COVID-19. Prior to March, the last time zero cases were reported was November 29, 2020.
“Although we recognize this does not mean the pandemic is over, it is certainly milestone worth celebrating,” says Dr. Natalie Bocking, Medical Officer of Health for the HKPR District Health Unit. “Like other areas of the province, we saw a spike in local cases as part of the third wave, so this decrease is a welcome sight.”
There are many reasons why there has been a decrease in cases, Dr. Bocking says, including people following the public health recommendations to wear a mask, maintain a physical distance from others, and staying home when ill. But she credits the rollout of the COVID-19 vaccine as a key piece in helping to bring the numbers down and applauds everyone for their work in either helping to vaccinate residents or for getting vaccinated themselves. As of June 21, 73 per cent of HKPR residents 12 years of age and older have had at least one dose of vaccine.
“It’s very encouraging to see so many of our residents committed to getting fully vaccinated against COVID,” Dr. Bocking says. “We know many people are eagerly looking for appointments to either book their second dose or receive their second dose sooner. We will continue to be adding more clinics to the provincial booking system as we receive additional vaccine in the coming months.”
Dr. Bocking also reminds residents that there are now multiple options for residents wanting to be vaccinated. With pharmacies, hospitals, community health centres and family health teams all now offering vaccination appointments, Dr. Bocking says there are options for everyone.
“This milestone is really a celebration that we can all share,” she says. “There are many partners and volunteers working together to support the vaccination of our residents, and everyone is to be congratulated and thanked.”
“Let’s keep up the good work so that we can continue to see more vaccinations, fewer cases and an opportunity to enjoy the summer.”