Ontario’s chief medical officer says he should have a better idea in the next week or so if the Omicron wave is nearing its peak.

Dr. Kieran Moore says there have been some encouraging signs, but can’t guarantee provincial restrictions will be rolled back on January 26th. He says doing so too soon could come with a rebound in cases coming into the already overdrawn hospital system.

At the Chatham-Kent Health Alliance, CEO Lori Marshall says they are coping. 

“Patient flow continues to be a challenge for us, we also continue to work with EMS diverting patients between our two emergency departments, between Chatham and Wallaceburg when the volumes in one become higher,” Marshall says. “Our staff are continuing to work in the organization in redeployed areas.”

On Thursday morning, Marshall said there were seven patients who had been admitted to hospital but were left sitting in the ER because there were no available beds.

160 staff at the hospital are currently affected by the virus, 85 off work and 75 at work but self-isolating. 

When the provincial restrictions do start to lift, Dr. Moore says it will happen in a phased manner over a couple of weeks.