In response to the rapidly spreading and highly transmissible Omicron variant, the Haldimand-Norfolk Health Unit is following provincial direction and is updating its COVID-19 testing, isolation, and case and contact management guidelines. Key changes include the following:
- PCR testing is no longer available for everyone. PCR testing will be available for high-risk individuals, and individuals who work in high-risk settings.
- Positive rapid antigen tests will no longer require PCR confirmation.
- Individuals who are fully vaccinated or under the age of 12, with COVID-19 or COVID-19 symptoms should isolate for five days.
- Individuals who are over 12 years of age and not fully vaccinated OR are immunocompromised with COVID-19 or COVID-19 symptoms should isolate for 10 days.
- All household contacts must also isolate for the same duration as the person with symptoms, regardless of their vaccination status.
- If you have symptoms of COVID-19, inform close contacts beyond your household contacts and provide them with this link Ontario.ca/exposed.
Public health officials are advising anyone who develops symptoms, such as fever, chills, a new or worsening cough, and a decrease or loss of sense of smell or taste, to consider their illness to be COVID-19 and to take the Ontario COVID-19 self-assessment to determine what to do next.
Starting today, the HNHU will only be contacting positive cases associated with the highest-risk settings:
- Hospital and healthcare settings including complex continuing care facilities and acute care facilities.
- Congregate living settings, e.g. long-term care and retirement homes, First Nation eldercare lodges, group homes, shelters, hospices, temporary foreign worker settings, and correctional institutions.
- First Nations, Inuit, Metis communities.