The local health unit is reporting the first death in Kawartha Lakes related to COVID-19.
The individual, a man in his 80s, was admitted to Ross Memorial Hospital (RMH) on March 19 after presenting with a high fever and influenza-like illness. Tests were conducted and late on March 21 it was confirmed the man tested positive for COVID-19.
He passed away this afternoon with both pneumonia and COVID-19 listed as the cause of death. The man had no travel history or contact with anyone confirmed to have COVID-19.
“We offer our sincere condolences to this man’s family and our thoughts are with them during this sad time,” says Dr. Lynn Noseworthy, Medical Officer of Health for the Haliburton, Kawartha, Pine Ridge District Health Unit. “Unfortunately, this man’s tragic passing highlights that we now have community transmission of COVID-19 in our area.”
Dr. Noseworthy says this means it’s more important than ever that everyone works together to protect themselves and others against the spread of the virus.
Everyone is urged to follow the public health recommendations for self-isolation if someone is ill; self-isolating if they have returned from travel recently, washing their hands frequently and thoroughly and covering coughs and sneezes. As well, everyone is urged to practise social distancing which includes staying home if possible, staying at least two metres from others, limiting time out for necessary purchases and avoiding public settings.
“Our team continues to work collaboratively with HKPR, regional and provincial partners on a coordinated response to COVID-19,” says Veronica Nelson, Interim President and CEO, Ross Memorial Hospital. “Seniors are especially vulnerable to this virus, which means that a large portion of our community is particularly at risk. Protect them by taking steps to ‘flatten the curve,’ and that means self-isolation, especially for those returning to Canada.”
If you think you may have COVID-19 symptoms or have been in close contact with someone who has it, use Ontario’s Self-Assessment Tool to see if you need to seek further care.
If you need further assistance, call TeleHealth Ontario at 1-866-797-0000 or your health care provider. You can also call the Health Unit at 1-866-888-4577, ext. 5020. Please leave a detailed message and someone will get back to you as soon as possible. If you have other questions or concerns about COVID-19, email the Health Unit at or visit www.hkpr.on.ca.
Visit Ontario’s website to learn more about how the province continues to protect Ontarians from COVID-19.