MIDDLESEX COUNTY, ONT. -- The Middlesex-London Health Unit is reporting 10 new COVID-19 cases Friday, bringing the regional total to 357, but also 10 more recovered, bringing that total to 173 resolved cases.

Of the total, 96 cases are among staff and residents at long-term care or retirement homes, that's four new cases in the last 24 hours in those facilities.

There are a total of 26 deaths, 12 of which are linked to seniors' homes, but there were no new deaths in the last 24 hours.

MLHU Medical Officer of Health Dr. Chris Mackie says, all residents and staff in high-risk long-term care homes have now been tested.

As that continues across the province, he expects we'll continue to see the numbers increase.

Still to continue the decline locally, he says, "It cannot be overstated…It is crucially important that people continue to keep physically distancing."

Southwestern Public Health is reporting one new positive test, for a total of 54 cases as of Friday, including 20 that are resolved and four previously reported deaths.

In Huron and Perth counties, there were two new cases for a total of 41 on Friday, including three more recoveries, bringing that number to 25 and the four previously reported deaths.

As of Thursday, Grey Bruce Public Health was reporting a total of 68 cases, including 23 recovered, one more than on Wednesday, and no deaths.

In Sarnia-Lambton, there were five new cases reported Friday, bringing the total number of confirmed cases to 164, with 66 recovered and 14 deaths, no change from Thursday.

Lambton Public Health stepping up testing

As tests of all residents and staff in Middlesex-London long-term care homes is completed, the same increase is being rolled out in Sarnia-Lambton.

Increased testing will now be provided to all residents and staff in long-term care facilities and retirement homes, including those who are not showing symptoms.

More testing will also be provided to those within the community who are currently showing symptoms of COVID-19.

"Increased testing is expected to produce an increase in the number of positive cases, but the course of action to prevent community spread remains the same," said Dr. Sudit Ranade, Lambton's Medical Officer of Health, in a statement.

He echoes Mackie's emphasis on distancing, adding, "Continue to practice physical distancing at all times because we know COVID-19 is in the community and we want people to continue acting that way."

Priority testing remains for those in dire need as not everyone required to be tested.

The community is reminded that there are other options available to find out if they should be tested, including the self-assessment tool, contacting Telehealth Ontario, or calling their health care provider.

- WIth files from CTV's Tammy Heisel