Delta variant circulating on Six Nations; case counts increase by 66 per cent

OHSWEKEN — As COVID-19 case numbers continue to surge across Ontario, a similar trend is happening on Six Nations, with 11 active cases reported this week and one confirmed strain of the Delta variant in a Six Nations resident.

Six Nations enjoyed a relatively COVID-free summer but as of press time, the community has the seventh highest per capita COVID case rate in Ontario out of 35 public health units reporting case counts.

Six Nations has experienced a 66 per cent increase in COVID-19 cases from last week.

The spike in cases comes just as Six Nations officials plan a safe return to in-person learning for local students this fall. On-reserve Six Nations students have been learning remotely since the World Health Organization declared the virus a global pandemic in March 2020.

There are currently 53 people in isolation on the territory. One person is currently hospitalized.

Aug. 21 saw Six Nations Public Health record seven active cases of COVID-19.

Six Nations Public Health has identified the Delta variant as a “variant of concern” or VOC. It is currently the dominant strain circulating around the world, according to the Centers for Disease Control, with about 80 per cent of worldwide cases being the Delta variant.

Experts say the Delta strain is more infectious and contagious than earlier COVID strains.

To date, there have been 11 COVID-related deaths on Six Nations.

It’s not known what is driving the recent surge on Six Nations or if Six Nations will increase its COVID alert level in light of the recent spike in cases.

Six Nations of the Grand River did not respond to questions by press time. Six Nations remains in COVID alert level green, the lowest alert level with the least amount of restrictions on public gatherings and other health measures.

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