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News release: February 1, 2021

Peel Public Health reports first B.1.351 variant case of COVID-19 in Peel, also first in Ontario

Mississauga, ON. (February 1, 2021) – The Region of Peel - Public Health today confirmed the first case of the B.1.351 variant (South African) in Ontario. The person is an adult male living in Mississauga and has not travelled. He is recovering at home.

Peel currently has seven confirmed cases of variants of concern (VOC), including six cases of B.1.1.7. However, with the newly announced aggressive testing now underway through Public Health Ontario labs, this number is expected to increase.

While these VOC are aggressive, it is important to remember that they are still COVID-19 – they are not a new disease and the actions we take every day to distance, mask and stay home will help stop the disease. Now is the time for residents, businesses and agencies to double-down on these actions to break chains of transmission and save lives.

Peel Public Health is working with the Public Health Agency of Canada, Ministry of Health, Public Health Ontario and other local health providers to monitor the situation and protect the community.

Dr. Lawrence Loh, Medical Officer of Health will hold one-on-one call availability this afternoon between 4:15 p.m. – 5:00 p.m. To schedule a 5-minute interview, please contact Ashleigh Hawkins.

"I am extremely concerned about the news of this variant in our community, especially with no history of travel. We are starting to see our cases plateau and community spread of this variant may change this suddenly. I urge all residents to continue to strictly follow Public Health guidelines and help break the chains of transmission."

Dr. Lawrence Loh, Medical Officer of Health, – Region of Peel

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Media contacts

Ashleigh Hawkins
Communication Specialist
Region of Peel

The Region of Peel works with residents and partners to create a healthy, safe and connected Community for Life for approximately 1.5 million people and over 175,000 businesses in the cities of Brampton and Mississauga and the Town of Caledon. Peel's services touch the lives of residents every day. For more information about the Region of Peel, explore and follow us on Twitter @regionofpeel and Instagram