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Wellington North mayor concerned but positive in light of county's first COVID-19 case

Andy Lennox said the town is awaiting more information from public health while Suzanne Trivers of the family health team hopes locals become more vigilant
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MOUNT FOREST – Wellington North mayor Andy Lennox has expressed concern about a confirmed case of COVID-19 in his region. 

Yesterday, public health confirmed a 66-year-old man tested positive and was recovering at Louise Marshall Hospital in Mount Forest.

Despite the confirmed case, Lennox said the township’s most important consideration remains the same. 

“Our priority continues to be keeping members of the community safe,” Lennox said. “Our efforts will continue in that area.”

Suzanne Trivers, executive director of the Mount Forest Family Health Team (MFFHT), said people are understandably more worried than before. She also said she hopes this makes some locals take this more seriously.

“There were some people in town that thought this was a big nothing,” Trivers said. “So we’re hoping now they’re recognizing that it is something and we have to pay more attention and be more vigilant.”

Trivers stressed a majority of people understand the information being presented to them and are practicing social distancing.

The Claire Stewart Medical Clinic, run by the MFFHT, has tightened its pandemic procedures under the community’s new circumstances. This has included locking the door and only allowing select patients into the building. 

She explained that if a case was confirmed to have been in the building it could have a devastating effect. 

“If a case is identified and it's been in the building then we have to do contact tracing, potentially we would have everybody self-isolate, everybody in the building,” she said. “Then we wouldn’t be able to provide services anymore.”

Lennox said the town is awaiting more information from public health about the confirmed case.

“We rely heavily on public health professionals and I understand they’re in the process of following-up on the case,” Lennox said. “We will continue to monitor the situation. As soon as we have further information to share we will do so.”

The best way to keep the community safe remains the same as before.

“Social distancing and washing your hands continue to be key messaging in keeping the community safe,” Lennox said. 

Trivers encouraged anybody in the community to reach out if they’re full of worry and to be wary of misinformation on social media. 

“Always reach out to get reassurance, don’t sit and worry in a vacuum,” Trivers said. “If you’re not comfortable reaching out to health care providers for that, then reach out to trusted friends who are in the know.” 

“If people self-isolate, wash their hands, clean their surfaces regularly and cover their cough, they’re gonna get through this.”

Keegan Kozolanka

About the Author: Keegan Kozolanka

Keegan Kozolanka covers civic matters under the Local Journalism initiative, which is funded by the Government of Canada
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