December 13th

The emergence of the Omicron variant has led to a large increase in the number of people testing positive for COVID-19 in Ottawa. As a result, Ottawa Public Health is currently experiencing a backlog with its case and contact management system, resulting in delayed notifications to people who have tested positive for COVID-19 and their high-risk contacts. 

To address this backlog of cases, Ottawa Public Health is asking individuals who test positive for COVID-19 to self-isolate and notify your high-risk contacts immediately of your positive COVID-19 status, as there may be a delay in Ottawa Public Health contacting you. If a close contact tells you they have tested positive, please book a COVID-19 test immediately, even if fully vaccinated – do not wait for Ottawa Public Health to contact you. 

If you need to isolate from household members, stay in a separate room or stay in an isolation centre until symptoms improve and it has been at least 10 days since symptoms started (or since testing positive if you have no symptoms), or until Ottawa Public Health informs you that you can stop isolating. For information about staying in an isolation centre please call 613-580-2424 ext. 25890 or email  

Ottawa Public Health will continue to contact people who have tested positive for COVID-19 with information about required isolation, however, this contact may be delayed due to the backlog.  

With rates of COVID-19 growing steeply in our community, Ottawa Public Health is continuing to focus on its vaccination efforts for eligible residents aged five and older, and booster doses for people aged 50 and older. Ottawa Public Health will continue following up with cases and contacts in congregate settings such as schools, long-term care homes, and other health care settings. 

If you are experiencing COVID-19 symptoms, do not wait a day or two days to see if your symptoms improve, book a COVID-19 test immediately and isolate until you have your results, even if you are vaccinated. 

The best way to prevent transmission of COVID-19 is to get vaccinatedbook your booster dose if eligible, and remain vigilant by practicing basic public health measures including wearing a mask, maintaining physical distance, and limiting close contacts. If you are gathering with others, keep your gathering small, and assess the risk by considering everyone’s vaccination status. 

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