“We know that VOCs are 50 to 70 percent more contagious than the original version of the virus, but we don’t know all of the health effects associated with this variant.”
The North Bay Parry Sound District Health Unit said they received a laboratory confirmation from a second person who tested positive for the COVID-19 Variant of Concern (VOC) from South Africa.
The person linked to the Lancelot Apartments outbreak had previously received a preliminary positive result for a COVID-19 VOC.
As of February 23 at 3 p.m., 42 people have tested positive for COVID-19 related to the outbreak. Of these, 26 people have preliminary positive results for a VOC and two people have a confirmed VOC strain that originated in South Africa. Two people linked to the outbreak have died, both with preliminary positive VOC results.
“There is still a lot to learn about the South African COVID-19 variant of the concern. We know that VOCs are 50 to 70 percent more contagious than the original version of the virus, but we don’t know all of the health effects of this variant, ”explains Dr. Jim Chirico, Medical Officer of Health.
The health unit says we are also seeing a spread of VOCs in the community in both Nipissing and Parry Sound districts. Community diffusion means people do not know where they got the virus and that they have not traveled outside of the district or had contact with travelers outside of the district.