Local medical officer of health commends community following lack of Mother’s Day caseload bump

Dr. Charles Gardner points out there've been no deaths in the past week

Mother’s Day has come and gone, and it did not appear to lead to an increase in local COVID-19 cases as feared.

In the weeks following Mother’s Day 2020, there was a noted uptick in new COVID-19 cases locally and across the province. That didn’t happen this year. “One of the things we look for is whether there’s elevation in cases that are attributable to holiday gathering events. And the last event like that, that would show up in our data at this point, would be Mother’s Day weekend,” said Dr. Charles Gardner, medical officer of health for the Simcoe Muskoka District Health Unit (SMDHU). “In fact, we did not see any elevation of cases related to gatherings for Mother’s Day.”

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“We’ve noted elevations on other weekends in the past. And so, I would like to commend the community, ourselves, collectively, for avoiding this potential elevation in cases, from getting together in the Mother’s Day weekend,” he added.

Gardner pointed out there’s another weekend that could cause a blip in the data. “We shall see with regards to the Victoria Day weekend. It’s a bit too early to be able to tell whether there’s an elevation related to that, but we would know that in the week to come.”

The lack of a Mother’s Day bump in cases came amid a time of improving metrics. “Cases decreased by 32% compared with the previous week,” Gardner said of recent data. “Certainly, with the reduction in cases over the last week, that’s been part of a trend since mid-April, very much coming down from the peak of the third wave.”

Gardner pointed out the last week represents a significant milestone in the local battle against the pandemic. “In the past week, we’ve had no deaths from COVID-19. That is a blessing. Certainly, we’ve had deaths every week, since November the 22nd, 2020 from COVID-19. So, I think that is quite noteworthy.”