Omicron variant detected in COVID-19 cluster in southwestern Ontario

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LONDON, Ont. — The Omicron variant has been detected in a large cluster of COVID-19 cases in southwestern Ontario.

The Middlesex-London Health Unit says it received the results of a whole genome sequencing sample Tuesday from an individual who is part of a cluster of at least 40 COVID-19 cases in the region.

Public health officials say they continue to investigate the cases that have been linked to the arrival of two travellers from Nigeria, who arrived in London in late-November.

The health unit says cases in this cluster have been associated with a number of schools, child-care centres and a church in south London.

More than 171 high-risk close contacts have been identified.

Ontario's pandemic advisers released modelling Tuesday showing that the province could see 3,000 new COVID-19 infections daily by mid-January, even without accounting for the new Omicron variant, which they warn could have a "substantial" impact.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Dec. 7, 2021.

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This story was produced with the financial assistance of the Facebook and Canadian Press News Fellowship.

The Canadian Press

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