The Northwestern Health Unit reported 47 new cases of COVID-19 Friday, with the number of people in hospital with the virus rising by one.
There were nine NWHU residents in hospital with the virus Friday. The health unit does not report how many of those are receiving intensive care.
The number of active cases confirmed by PCR testing fell from 352 to 311, due to a large number of previous cases declared resolved.
Health authorities including the NWHU have cautioned that case numbers now provide only limited insight into the spread of COVID-19, after the province restricted access to PCR testing in late December, in the face of overwhelming demand as Omicron caused unprecedented levels of infection.
By region, there were 121 active cases in Sioux Lookout, 105 in Kenora, 34 in Fort Frances, 22 in Dryden, nine each in Rainy River and Red Lake, seven in Atikokan, and four in Emo.
Of the 47 cases reported Friday, 20 were in Kenora, 11 in Sioux Lookout, eight in Dryden, three in Rainy River, two each in Atikokan and in Red Lake, and one in Fort Frances.
The NWHU’s testing positivity rate stood at 17.7 per cent on 1,107 tests for the week of Jan. 3 to Jan. 9, the most recent period reported. That compares to a testing positivity rate of around 1.8 per cent throughout the entire pandemic.