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York Region wastewater shows 'dramatic increase' in COVID-19 community transmission
April 21, 2022

According to York Region's associate medical officer of health, wastewater surveillance reveals a "dramatic" increase in COVID-19 community transmission since early April.

Dr. Cindy Shen noted the rise seems to have slowed in the past week but is concerned Easter long weekend gatherings may cause a spike. The outcome of the long weekend won't be known for another week or two.

Shen said hospitalizations have also increased.

"There's certainly concern there in terms of health care capacity. That's why it's really important for folks to continue to wear a mask in indoor settings and get the maximum number of doses of vaccines that they are eligible for."

The infectiousness of the virus varies from person to person, Shen said.

"We do know that individuals could be infectious up to two days before their symptoms start as well, which makes this virus very difficult to manage."

Experts recommend wearing a mask, staying home if not well, and washing hands frequently to help lower the risk of transmission.

Shen also advises getting a booster dose regardless of having had COVID-19.

"We know that booster doses actually provide additional protection against severe outcomes and also helps limit transmission."