Sumary of Combating the fourth wave of COVID-19 in Ontario:
- Each wave of the COVID-19 pandemic raises different levels of public health challenges.
- However, with the more infectious severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) Delta variant becoming the dominant circulating strain across Ontario, COVID-19 cases are steadily increasing, indicating the possibility of a Fall resurgence.
- Evaluating if current vaccine coverage and public health measures are sufficient to prevent a possible Fall resurgence in Ontario Researchers from Canada recently attempted to project the number of COVID-19 cases and the demand for acute hospital resources for Fall 2021 in a mid-sized southwestern Ontario community.
- They sought to evaluate if current vaccine coverage and contact reduction levels are sufficient to mitigate a possible 4th wave driven by the Delta variant, or if stricter public health measures need to be reinstituted.
- They parameterized the model using the medical literature and government reports and estimated the current level of contact reduction by calibrating to cases and hospitalizations.
- They also projected the number of infections and hospitalizations and the time to re-instate more stringent public health measures over the Fall of 2021 under various vaccine coverage and contact reduction levels.
- This could lead to the cancellation of elective surgeries and other non-COVID-related healthcare services.
- “Reducing contacts by 27% to 30%, compared to pre-pandemic contact levels, prevents high case volumes and the reinstatement of more restrictive public health measures.