The Region of Peel’s medical officer of health, Dr. Lawrence Loh, recently told reporters he’s deeply concerned about the recent upward trend in the number of COVID-19 cases. He said that it would help keep numbers lower if residents did not travel outside the region.

Dr. Loh said, “I know that this year has not been what many of us have envisioned, but if you are planning to travel outside the region, please reconsider your trip. Federal advice still recommends avoiding non-essential travel outside of Canada, and precautions are sensible even when travelling outside of our community.”

Loh went on to add, “We must stop this vicious cycle of people getting sick in social gatherings, at work (and) in travel and bringing it home, then bringing it back out into the community.”

He said that an increase in case numbers was to some degree expected after Peel entered Stage 3 on July 31, but that the concern is the region’s health resources could find itself under strain if numbers keep going up.

Indeed, the August 28 COVID-19 report from Peel Public Health indicated that acute care beds in the region are at 89 per cent capacity and intensive care beds at 81 per cent. Beds with ventilators are 39 per cent full.

Loh also noted that about half the new cases are among people in the 21 to 50 age range and that most of their cases were traced to social gatherings, workplaces, and travel.

“As I’ve always explained, everything with COVID-19 moves in two-week increments – two weeks from transmission to onset and two weeks from onset to hospitalization in severe cases. That means even though we have testing, tracing and treatment capacity now, any further rise in cases will certainly test that,” warned Loh.

For the most current COVID numbers, see the Region of Peel website.