New local COVID-19 Risk Index launched by Public Health Sudbury & DistrictsIssued: Friday, June 10, 2022
Today, Public Health Sudbury & Districts launched its new online COVID-19 Risk Index to help area residents assess the real-time risk of COVID-19 transmission locally and make informed decisions on how to protect themselves.
“The COVID-19 Risk Index will be updated weekly and incorporates the most current and relevant data about the status of COVID-19 in our community. It is an easy-to-use tool to further help residents understand the overall risk of COVID-19 spread in our service area alongside their own personal risk considerations. We hope that this new tool will help residents more easily navigate living with COVID-19 and make informed decisions about COVID-safe precautions,” said Dr. Penny Sutcliffe, Medical Officer of Health for Sudbury and Districts.
The COVID-19 Risk Index is a visual representation of the overall risk of disease transmission in the community. The risk level is determined using seven separate indicators related to community transmission, the impact on our health care system capacity, and severe health outcomes. The Index has four risk levels—low, moderate, high, very high—and each level has corresponding recommended public health guidance for COVID-safe practices. As of Friday, June 10, the current overall risk for our service area is moderate. To determine the risk level at any one time, the current data for each indicator is compared with the levels seen at the height of the local Omicron COVID-19 variant wave in January 2022.
The COVID-19 Risk Index can help individuals make informed decisions about their behaviours based on locally relevant, current data. The guidance provided by the Index is particularly helpful now, as the province lifts most remaining provincially mandated mask mandates, effective Saturday, June 11, and encourages Ontarians to continue to wear a mask if they feel it is right for them.
Up-to-date COVID-19 vaccination combined with use of the COVID-19 Risk Index and related COVID-safe practices are critical actions to continue to protect health and the health care system. As always, people should continue to wear a tight-fitting, well constructed mask if they feel it is right for them based on such factors as their own health status, whether they have received all recommended doses of a COVID-19 vaccine, and consideration of the health and vaccine status of close contacts. Masking remains a requirement for those who are recovering from COVID-19, have symptoms of the virus, or are a close contact of someone with COVID-19.
If you think you may have COVID-19 or were exposed to the virus, visit covid-19.ontario.ca/exposed to confirm if you need to isolate and to learn more about being assessed for treatment or getting tested if eligible, and informing others of your exposure.
The COVID-19 Risk Index will be updated every Wednesday and is a complement to many other data and reports regularly made available by Public Health to help the community understand the burden of illness posed by COVID-19. For more information about COVID-19 and COVID-safe behaviours, please visit phsd.ca or call 705.522.9200 (toll-free 1.866.522.9200).