MIDDLESEX CENTRE, ONT. -- The Middlesex-London Health Unit (MLHU) is reporting 11 new COVID-19 cases Thursday, a day after introducing new protocols for a number of businesses.

The new cases bring the total number of cases in the region to 1,071, including 944 resolved and 59 deaths, leaving 68 active cases.

There were no new deaths Thursday, after two deaths were reported in the last seven days following four months with none.

There are ongoing outbreaks at nine long-term care and retirement homes, but no new cases have been reported in those facilities, which hold at 218 cases and 38 deaths.

The new protocols announced Wednesday raised serious concerns among area sports teams and facilities, with at least one actually closing its doors because of them.

In response, during a virtual press conference on Thursday, MLHU Medical Officer of Health Dr. Chris Mackie said they are continuing to consult with local sports organizations.

“At this point a couple of things have become clear. There may be an opportunity to tweak the orders before they come into effect…for sports organizations to operate.”

He added that any adjustments – that will improve opportunities to play while having a minimal impact on risk - are expected to be issued on Friday afternoon.

However, Mackie pointed out that a number of the health unit orders raising concerns were already included in the province’s Stage 3 reopening measures – including distancing rules that may make some games unfeasible.

Still, a virtual town hall will be head for sport, recreation and fitness facility stakeholders at 2:30 p.m. Friday so they can ask questions.

Here is where the cases stand in other area regions based on the most recent publicly available data, note none are reporting any new deaths in recent weeks:

  • Elgin-Oxford – two new, 17 active, 300 total, 278 resolved, five deaths, one outbreak
  • Haldimand-Norfolk – none new, 10 active, 508 total, 461 resolved, 32 deaths, no outbreaks
  • Huron-Perth – none new , none active, 141 total, 136 resolved, five deaths, no outbreaks
  • Grey-Bruce – one new, five active 165 total, 160 resolved, no deaths, no outbreaks
  • Sarnia-Lambton – none new, nine active, 365 total, 331 resolved, 25 deaths, two outbreaks

Across the province, more than 800 new cases were logged Thursday as well as nine new deaths.