Rising hospitalizations and outbreaks are disrupting Ottawa’s COVID stability

Ottawa's skyline across the Ottawa River from Bate Island in March 2022. (Ian Black/CBC - photo credit)

Ottawa’s skyline across the Ottawa River from Bate Island in March 2022. (Ian Black/CBC – photo credit)

Recent Developments:

The newest

After weeks of stability, some of Ottawa’s COVID-19 trends have risen to levels last seen in January.

According to Ottawa Public Health (OPH), COVID-19 indicators are generally stable at moderate to high levels that have remained constant for most of 2023.

Experts recommend people wear masks indoors and in Ontario in the days after COVID symptoms appear. Being sick and staying home and staying up to date on COVID vaccines can also help protect vulnerable people.

Non-COVID respiratory virus levels are generally low and/or seasonal.


Data from the research team shows the average coronavirus sewage level is stable after a slow decline earlier in the month.

The latest data is from March 14th. OPH considers this level to be high.


The number of patients with COVID-19 in local hospitals rises to 26, which is most of the numbers in the second half of 2022 and early 2023.

Three patients are in the intensive care unit.

A separate count, which includes patients who tested positive for COVID for other reasons after being admitted, patients admitted for ongoing COVID complications, and patients transferred from other healthcare units, also now resembles the January counts.

Ottawa Public Health

Ottawa Public Health

Tests, outbreaks and deaths

Ottawa has 22 active COVID outbreaks, which increased this week after declining earlier this month. The number is considered high by OPH.

The city’s COVID-19 test positivity rate has hovered between 11 percent and 13 percent since early February, which OPH describes as moderate.

OPH has reported 111 more COVID cases and the death of someone in their 80s with COVID since Tuesday.

To date, 1,028 Ottawa residents have died with COVID as a contributing or underlying factor. 36 of those people have died this year.


Twenty-eight percent of Ottawans aged five and older have received a dose of COVID vaccine within the past six months, as widely recommended, with older age groups showing higher rates.

This corresponds to around 750,000 people in this age group without the recommended vaccination protection. It doesn’t take into account immunity from getting COVID.

Ottawa Public Health

Ottawa Public Health

As of the latest weekly update, 85 percent of Ottawa residents had at least one COVID vaccine dose, 82 percent had at least two, 56 percent at least three, and 31 percent at least four.

across the region


Coronavirus sewage averages are stable in Kingston. They are otherwise outdated or unavailable outside of Ottawa.

The average COVID-19 test positivity remains high in Renfrew County at around 16 percent.

The Eastern Ontario Health Unit (EOHU) COVID risk level remains moderate.

hospitalizations and deaths

Eastern Ontario communities outside of Ottawa report 35 COVID-19 hospitalizations with nine patients in intensive care units.

This regional census does not include Hastings Prince Edward (HPE) public health, which uses a different counting method. The number of local hospitalizations is stable.

West Quebec has 59 COVID hospitalized patients, the lowest number since July 2022. Two of them are in intensive care.

The province reported five more COVID deaths in the region for a total of 407. Renfrew County reports its 86th COVID death in its weekly update.


The Kingston Area Health Unit says 28 percent of the population aged five and older have received a COVID vaccine in the past six months. It accounts for 26 percent at HPE and is not available elsewhere.

Across eastern Ontario, between 79 percent and 90 percent of residents age five and older have received at least two doses of COVID-19 vaccine, and between 52 percent and 65 percent of those residents have had at least three, according to the province.


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