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Provincial data shows 14 cases of COVID-19 'Kraken' variant in Waterloo Region

Based on positive test results between Dec. 18 and Jan. 14
COVID-19 testing 2
Tubes used to put COVID testing swabs in

The so-called 'Kraken' variant of COVID-19 has been detected in Waterloo Region. 

Public Health Ontario data shows there were 14 positive test results locally for the new Omicron subvariant, XBB.1.5, between December 18 and January 14. 

Region of Waterloo Public Health confirmed to CityNews 570 that it became aware of the positive test results when the Public Health Ontario report was published this week. 

Waterloo Region's Medical Officer of Health, Dr. Hsiu-Li Wang, has previously said that we should expect to see new variants emerge locally, as well as additional waves of COVID-19. 

"There has been talk about new variants -- such as the new XBB.1.5 variant, nicknamed 'Kraken' by some -- which is rising across Ontario and Canada," said Dr. Wang during a regional council meeting last week. "However, the impact may not be dissimilar to what we've seen the last several months. That is moderate waves, up and down, of COVID-19 infection. In the face of new variants, and a background level of vaccinations and previous infections, our recommendations remain the same." 

Dr. Wang encouraged residents to stay up-to-date with recommended vaccinations, wear a well-fitted mask in indoor public settings, and improve or maintain good indoor air ventilation. 

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