A St. Francis Catholic Secondary School staff member has tested positive for COVID-19 and is now at home is self-isolation, Niagara Region Public Health confirmed.
This infection Is believed to be the result of community exposure within Ontario, Dr. Mustafa Hirji said in a media release.
Hirji is acting medical officer of health for the Niagara Region Public Health and Emergency Services.
“With local transmission occurring around Ontario and possibly now in Niagara as well, it is important we continue with our civic duty to help break the chain of transmission by keeping our physical distance and avoiding unnecessary interactions with others,” Hirji said.
The man in his 30s had no international travel history and worked while infectious.
Staff and students of the St. Catharines secondary school have been notified of the risk of exposure and Niagara public health has recommended that they continue to monitor themselves for COVID-19 symptoms for the next 14 days. Anyone presenting symptoms have been asked to immediately self-isolate ant contact their health care professional or public health.
Common symptoms of COVID-19 are fever and/or new cough or a cough that is getting worse. Other symptoms include difficulty breathing, sore throat and a runny or congested nose, not related to allergies.
The best way to prevent the spread of respiratory viruses, including COVID-19, is to:
- Avoid all non-essential travel, as recommended by provincial and federal health authorities.
- Wash your hands often with soap and water or with alcohol-based hand rub.
- Practise physical distancing by avoiding unnecessary close interaction with others (e.g. shaking hands, deferring events).
- Stay home if you’re sick.
- Cover coughs and sneezes with a tissue or sleeve.
- Clean and disinfect high touch surfaces daily. Use a disinfectant and follow manufacturer’s instructions.
- Call ahead if visiting your health care provider for infectious symptoms so they can plan to protect others from spread.