COVID-19 Community Risk Level Bumped from Moderate to High – SMDHU


Release Published: Oct 21st, 2022

News release from The Simcoe Muskoka District Health Unit, courtesy of Barrie 360

As of Thursday, October 20, 2022, the Simcoe Muskoka District Health Unit (SMDHU) has moved the region’s current overall COVID-19 Community Risk Level from moderate to high as the virus continues to circulate within the community. This is the first time the risk level has increased since it was launched in September 2022.

“We are seeing a higher level of COVID-19 transmission in Simcoe Muskoka, which means there is a greater risk of getting sick with potential for severe illness,” said Dr. Charles Gardner, SMDHU’s medical officer of health. “We encourage individuals to use more layers of protection when out in public, such as increasing frequency of mask use and maintaining physical distance indoors. Getting your bivalent COVID-19 vaccine booster is also strongly recommended as an added layer to protect against severe illness, and it is available across Simcoe Muskoka.”

The COVID-19 Community Risk Level, available on SMDHU’s website, is based on five indicators (local percent positivity of PCR tests, confirmed cases, hospitalizations, institutional outbreaks, and wastewater signals) that are monitored weekly. Together, these indicators make up the current overall COVID-19 risk level in our community as one of the following levels: lower (caution), moderate, high, or very high. Each risk level is explained, and information is provided about personal and situational risks that individuals should consider and what actions they can take to protect themselves and others from spreading and getting severely ill from COVID-19. The more precautions a person takes the better the protection for themselves and others. These actions include:

The COVID-19 Community Risk Level is updated each Thursday by 2 p.m. Residents are reminded to visit smdhu.org for weekly risk level updates, and to learn more about local COVID-19 transmission and ways to be COVID-safe.

For information about where to get your COVID-19 vaccination, including pop-up and GO VAXX bus clinic schedules, please visit our COVID-19 pages at smdhu.org/getvaccinated.

Patricia Dent

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