MIDDLESEX CENTRE, ONT. -- The Middlesex-London Health Unit (MLHU) is reporting 53 new COVID-19 cases Monday, a total that ties the record set last week.

The new cases bring the total in the region to 2,121, including 1,743 resolved and 80 deaths (none new), leaving 298 active cases.

Fifty-three cases were also reported last Thursday, topping the previous record of 47 set the day before.

Over the weekend, the region added 55 cases and two new deaths, one of which was associated with the ongoing outbreaks at the London Health Sciences Centre’s (LHSC) University Hospital.

The death brought the total there to 15, and as of Sunday, 77 patient cases and 79 staff cases had been associated with the outbreaks since the first one was declared on Nov. 10.

LHSC Chief Medical Officer Dr. Adam Dukelow said Monday that no new outbreak-linked cases have been reported since Saturday, and there is hope things are improving though they are “not out of the woods yet.”

He also confirmed that help is being provided for staff in work quarantine situations, meaning they can only work, go to urgent medical appointments and go home, but are also asked to isolate from family.

"For those situations where there are challenges with the work quarantine or other people in the house that may be high-risk, we are providing - LHSC is providing - hotel rooms for some staff in order to support them as they go through this."

There are now ongoing outbreaks in eight University Hospital units, with outbreaks resolved in the 9IP Orthopaedics and 6IP Cardiovascular Surgery units.

There are also ongoing outbreaks at seniors’ facilities including Chelsey Park, Country Terrace and McCormick Home, as well as six schools and two residences at Western University.

However, MLHU Medical Officer of Health Dr. Chris Mackie says the majority of cases reported Monday are close contacts, mostly among family members, with 11-12 among students, and a very small number that are travel-related.

With the vaccine roll-out starting in Ontario, Mackie says it could be days or weeks before it arrives in the London region, and the limited number of doses will go to high-priority recipients as decided in collaboration with Ontario’s Ministry of Health.

There is a new case at London's Westminster Secondary School.The school remains open and buses will continue to operate.

Southwestern Public Health (SWPH) is also reporting a record number of new case in Elgin and Oxford counties.

The 31 cases reported Monday break a single-day record set on Friday when 30 cases were reported.

St. Thomas, Aylmer and Norwich Township currently have the most active cases, while Aylmer accounts for the most cumulative cases, with 156 to date.

SWPH is now also recommending that members of the same household of someone with COVID-19 symptoms waiting to be tested should all self-isolate.

In a statement, SWPH Medical Officer of Health added, “COVID-19 spreads when people have close contact with each other. Our case history has many examples of multi-member households infected with the virus…We must all work together to break the trend of household members unknowingly bringing COVID-19 to their workplace, to schools, and the broader community.”

Here is where the cases stand in the region based on the most recent publicly available data:

  • Elgin-Oxford – 31 new, 142 active, 766 total, 615 resolved, nine deaths
  • Sarnia-Lambton – four new, 24 active, 452 total, 402 resolved, 26 deaths
  • Haldimand-Norfolk – four new, 52 active, 734 total, 644 resolved, 33 deaths
  • Grey-Bruce – 32 active, 400 total, 368 resolved, no deaths
  • Huron-Perth – 27 new, 54 active, 459 total, 385 resolved, 20 deaths (weekend totals)

Meanwhile after a single-day drop, there were more than 1,900 new COVID-19 cases reported across Ontario.