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Public Health confirms first local case of COVID-19 Omicron variant

Hastings Prince Edward Public Health received lab confirmation of the first case of the COVID-19 Omicron variant of concern in the region on Friday, Dec. 17. The case has no history of travel.

HPE Public Health recorded 29 new cases and 35 recoveries for an active case load of 249. There are seven people in hospital, five in intensive care.

“The Omicron variant is highly transmissible and while evidence is still emerging, early evidence suggests it can produce severe disease, with the greatest risk to those who are unvaccinated,” said Dr. Ethan Toumishey, Acting Medical Officer at HPEPH.

Public Health notes there is currently a high demand for COVID-19 vaccines in the region and residents are asked to be patient, and continue checking various options for COVID-19 vaccine availability. As additional shipments are received, availability will increase both at community vaccination clinics and at local pharmacies. HPEPH is working to increase appointment availability and will provide updates as new appointments become available.

To check current availability:
At community vaccination clinics, visit; appointments are required
At local pharmacies, contact pharmacies listed at; appointments are required at most participating pharmacies, contact the pharmacy to confirm their process

Rapid Antigen Tests may be purchased from retailers. The local LCBOs have not received their allocation for test distribution as of 10 a.m. this morning. Currently the provincial testing holiday pop up schedule does not include Hastings Prince Edward locations. Click here for COVID-19 test and testings locations 

Filed Under: Local News

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