OTTAWA -- The Renfrew County and District Health Unit (RCDHU) is declaring a COVID-19 outbreak among a particular group of people in the town of Deep River, Ont., about 200 km northwest of Ottawa.

In a release, the RCDHU said there are 15 individuals who have received a positive laboratory-confirmed case of COVID-19 to date among this group.

"More cases are anticipated due to the large number of high-risk family contacts within this closely knit group in the Town of Deep River. On further investigation, there appears to be spread amongst the members within this group," the health unit said.

The RCDHU is in the midst of conducting case and contact tracing, but did not identify the group in question.

“This is a tightly knit group. We are taking all precautions to limit spread within the community and to prevent spread throughout Renfrew County and District,” said Acting Medical Officer of Health Dr. Robert Cushman.

The health unit has directed all affected families and individuals within this specific group to self-isolate until cleared of COVID-19.

The RCDHU is reporting 49 active cases of COVID-19 in its region, with 15 new cases announced on Wednesday.

“We would like to thank members from this specific group for their full cooperation during this important contact tracing investigation. We are confident that we will have an extensive assessment of the situation soon. This will be followed by testing and further investigation within the next couple of days,” Cushman said.