By Victoria Gray
Three more community members have died as a result of COVID-19 infections.
Six Nations Elected Council (SNEC) did not address the deaths, but the death toll rose from 19 to 22 on February 7 according to the COVID-19 status update.
There are currently five community members in the hospital fighting COVID-19.
Active cases of the virus have dropped to 36 with 134 people in self-isolation.
“I’m happy to see our cases numbers continue to decline and I would like to commend the community for the sacrifices they have made to keep one another safe from this virus,” Elected Chief Mark Hill said on his radio update on Feb. 4.
Health Services is no longer reporting numbers of people who have self-reported a positive result on a rapid antigen test. Due to this, the number of positive cases in the community may not be adequately represented.
Chastity VanEvery, heath services communications officer said members are still encouraged to self-report positive rapid test results.
Health Services circulated a statement on January 14 encouraging those who test positive and all those who live with them to immediately self-isolate and notify their own close contacts.
Call Ohsweken Public Heath at 519-445-2672, if they don’t answer, leave a voicemail explaining your first and last names, the date you tested positive and your contact information.
“Know your close contacts for the last 48 hours and notify them,” the statement said.
There are currently 64 active cases of COVID-19 on the territory and 125 people in self-isolation, who either have symptoms or were in contact with a positive case.
There are seven community members in the hospital and 19 people have died.
Six Nations reported 16 cases in the last seven days, 36 cases have been resolved and no community members were admitted to hospital. The five people admitted to hospital have been there for more than seven days.
There have been a total of 1,471 cases of COVID-19 on Six Nations since the pandemic began in Mach 2020.
Six Nations Health Services will also no longer be tracking the positivity rates per 100,000 people in neighbouring communities because those municipalities have stopped testing the entire population with PCR tests, while Six Nations continues to offer PCR testing to community members as well as giving out rapid antigen tests via pop-ups.
Vaccination rates remain the same at 50 per cent of people with two doses of the COVID-19 vaccine and 55 per cent with one dose.
The COVID-19 vaccinations centre has moved from Dajoh Youth and Elder Centre to Gane Yohs Health Centre on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays with walk-in appointments available for those aged five and over.
A vaccine clinic for students from Kawenni:io/Gaweni:yo Private School on Feb. 9 at Gane Yohs from noon until 5 p.m.
A community vaccine clinic will take place on Feb. 9 at the Burger Barn from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. It will be a drive-thru vaccine clinic. Participants are asked to stay in their cars. No registration is required and both pediatric and adult doses; either first, second or third, are available.
“This is a great convenient opportunity for Six nations Community Members to receive their COVID-19 shot and boosters if you haven’t already,” Hill said.
“Due to changes in the availability of testing, driven by increasing COVID-19 cases related to the Omicron variant, case counts in this report are an underestimate of the true number of individuals with COVID-19 in Ontario. As such, data should be interpreted with caution,” Health Ontario’s daily epidemiology report said.
The province also reported 2,254 people in hospital with COVID-19 and 474 in ICU’s a drop from 586 last Tuesday. There were also 42 new deaths logged and 2,092 new cases.
There have been 16 deaths in Brantford this month, leaving the death count at 51. The Brant Community Health System (BCHS) which includes the Brantford General Hospital and the Willett urgent-care centre in Paris, reported 23 COVID-19 patients in hospital (down from 42), with four in critical care. The hospital is also listing 19 “COVID-19 patients – other.”
There have been 8,042 in the city since the pandemic began.
Hamilton is reporting over 6,744 active cases and two fatalities in the last 24 hours. There are 58 people in Hamilton hospitals with the virus and 11 in ICU’s.
Haldimand-Norfolk is reporting 20 people in hospital and six in the ICU. There was no new fatalities leaving that number at 64. There are 1051 active cases and a total of 5,107 cases.
Six Nations moved to follow the provincial COVID-19 measures and the limit for social gatherings increased to 10 people in doors and 25 people outdoors. Capacity increased to 50 per cent for Restaurants, bars and other food or drink establishments without dance facilities, retail stores, shopping malls, fitness facilities, gyms, meeting and even spaces. Cinemas, recreational amenities like amusement arks, casinos, bingo halls, galleries etc. Religious services, rites and ceremonies also increased to 50 per cent capacity. Spectator sports, concerts and theatres can also operate at 50 per cent capacity or 500 people, whichever is smaller.
Proof of vaccination with the QR code will be be required off reserve, you do not need it at on reserve businesses or restaurants.
Restrictions will ease further on February 21 allowing for gathers of 25 people indoors and 100 people outdoors. They will ease again on March 14, indoor gatherings will be limited to 50 people with no limit on outdoor gatherings and all capacity restrictions on businesses will be lifted.
If you are experiencing symptoms of COVID-19, like a headache, loss of taste, cold or flu-like symptoms book a COVID-19 test at the Assessment Centre online at www.sixnationscovid19.ca, or by phone at 1-855-977-7737 or 226-446-9909.
Six Nations members are strongly encouraged to get a COVID-19 vaccination. To book a COVID-19 vaccine appointment visit www.sixnationscovid19.ca, or call the Vaccine Call Center at 226-227-9288.
For test results visit https://covid19results.ehealthontario.ca:4443/agree.
For anyone struggling and in need of support, the Six Nations Mobile Crisis Line is available 24 hours a day seven days a week at 519-445-2204 or 1-866-445-2204.
By Victoria Gray