Rising cases mean additional COVID-19 protections are required across Greater Sudbury and the districts of Manitoulin and Sudbury – Public Health Sudbury & Districts

Persistently high and growing COVID-19 case rates have prompted Public Health Sudbury & Districts’ Medical Officer of Health to expand the legally enforceable Instructions (PDF, updated December 9, 2021) currently in place locally under the provincial Reopening Ontario Act. New protective measures are being implemented throughout the agency’s service area and those currently in force in Greater Sudbury are being expanded to reach across the Sudbury and Manitoulin districts.
“We are at a point where we need to double down on the basics like masking, physical distancing, and vaccination. But local circumstances also mean that we also need some new rules, rolling back some relaxed measures, to further protect people who are unvaccinated, especially kids,” said Dr. Penny Sutcliffe, Medical Officer of Health with Public Health Sudbury & Districts. “Today I am announcing new protective measures to reduce the spread of COVID-19 and do our best to ensure we are as prepared as we can be for the highly transmissible Omicron variant,” added Dr. Sutcliffe.
Following a review of trends and data—and considering concerns about the Omicron variant and the socializing that occurs with the holiday season—Dr. Sutcliffe, with the support of the provincial Chief Medical Officer of Health, is requiring that the following measures be in place across Greater Sudbury, Manitoulin District, and Sudbury District, effective Saturday, December 11, 2021, at 12:01 a.m. The new Instructions expand the measures currently in place for the City of Greater Sudbury to apply across the agency’s services area, including:
These new Instructions also add new protections as follows:
Case rates continue to climb in the Sudbury and Manitoulin districts. On December 4, 2021, Public Health Sudbury & Districts surpassed a milestone of 4000 COVID-19 cases reported since the beginning of the pandemic, less than one month after we reached the previous milestone of 3000 cases. Despite the pandemic being in its 21st month, more than one quarter (26%) of total cases have been reported in just the last 30 days. With record numbers of cases currently active and as COVID-19 infections continue to rise, new hospitalizations and the need for ICU admissions would be expected to follow, not only impacting community members, but our health care system as well. Public Health is asking everyone to understand the seriousness of this risk to all and do whatever is possible to help reverse the current COVID-19 case trends. Public Health is doing its best to ensure additional restrictions will reduce transmission, protect in-person learning, and safeguard health and the health care system.
“The additional COVID-19 protection measures already in place have had an impact in that our numbers are not sky-rocketing. However, case rates are stubbornly high and remain among the highest in the province. While we do see cases of COVID-19 among students, which ultimately affect classes, cohorts, and schools, transmission is mostly occurring in community—we are not seeing high transmission of COVID-19 in schools and we remain focused in preserving in-person learning. The recent modelling from Ontario’s Science Advisory Table paints a stark picture of case growth even without the Omicron variant. The modelling shows that we need to double down on public health measures to blunt transmission, combined with getting as many people as possible protected through vaccination,” said Dr. Penny Sutcliffe, Medical Officer of Health with Public Health Sudbury & Districts.
In addition to the Instructions issued under the Reopening Ontario Act, the Medical Officer of Health is strongly recommending that area residents follow these additional measures:
Public Health is reissuing its call to everyone to continue to limit your outings, get vaccinated, wear your mask, avoid crowds and poorly ventilated areas, and keep 2 metres distance from those not part of your own household. Monitor yourself for symptoms and stay home when ill—even mildly symptomatic people should self-isolate immediately and seek testing to prevent spreading COVID-19 in our community. When practised diligently, COVID-safe measures help to limit the spread of COVID-19, including the variants of concern.
Public Health Sudbury & Districts will continue to review and assess the data and amend the Instructions accordingly. Full details, including the detailed Letter of Instructions document, will be available shortly at phsd.ca. A detailed technical brief (PDF) describing the current local COVID-19 circumstances is found here.
For more information or if you have questions about COVID-19 or vaccinations, please visit phsd.ca/COVID-19 or call Public Health Sudbury & Districts at 705.522.9200 (toll-free 1.866.522.9200).
This item was last modified on December 11, 2021
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