COVID-19 has claimed the lives of three more people in Windsor-Essex.
According to the local health unit, the latest to pass away are two women in their 70s from the community and one woman in her 90s at a long-term care home.
The health unit is also reporting 60 new cases of the virus Saturday.
Of the new cases, 15 are outbreak related, seven were caused by close contact with another confirmed case, six are being blamed on community spread while 32 others remain under investigation.
The region has now seen 12,530 confirmed cases of COVID-19 along with 355 deaths.
Outbreaks are being reported at eight workplaces and seven long-term care homes along with two community outbreaks.
There are currently 33 people in hospital being treated for the virus.
COVID-19 Ontario: Province logs more than 1,200 new cases, 28 deaths – CTV Toronto
Ontario is recording more than 1,200 new COVID-19 infections, marking the fourth straight day of case counts increasing.
On Friday, provincial health officials logged 1,258 infections of the novel coronavirus, as well as 28 more deaths linked to the disease.
Before that, the province recorded 1,138 new cases on Thursday, 1,054 on Wednesday and 975 on Tuesday.
Daily case counts have hovered slightly above or below the 1,000 mark for much of the past few weeks.
The province’s seven-day average for number of cases recorded is now 1,114, down from 1,206 one week ago.
Of the new cases logged Friday, 362 are in Toronto, 274 are in Peel Region and 104 are in York Region.
York Region moved back into Ontario’s colour-coded reopening framework on Monday, allowing gyms and restaurants to reopen with strict public health measures in place.
Toronto and Peel Region remain under a stay-at-home order until at least March 8.
There were 64,049 COVID-19 tests completed in Ontario in the last-recorded 24-hour period. The test positivity rate now stands at about 2.3 per cent, according to the Ministry of Health.
Friday’s count brings the total number of lab-confirmed cases in Ontario 298,569, including deaths and recoveries.
With the 28 new deaths confirmed by health officials on Friday, the province’s death toll is now 6,944. None of the new deaths included residents of the province’s long-term care system.
According to the province, there are at least 683 patients infected with the novel coronavirus in Ontario hospitals as of Friday. Of those patients, 284 are in the intensive care unit (ICU) and 193 of those 284 patients are breathing with the assistance of a ventilator.
At this time last week, there were 689 hospitalized COVID-19 patients in Ontario, 269 of which were in the ICU and 190 were on a ventilator.
On Friday, health officials deemed 1,007 more cases of the disease to be resolved, bringing Ontario’s number of recovered patients up to 281,331.
There are currently 10,294 active cases of COVID-19 in Ontario, down from 10,550 one week ago.
Variants of concern in Ontario
Health officials confirmed Friday that 28 more cases of the U.K. variant, also known as B.1.1.7, have been found in Ontario, bringing the province’s total count to 477.
There is now a total of 14 confirmed cases of the South African variant, known as B.1.351, in Ontario after three new cases were logged by officials on Friday.
No new cases of the Brazilian variant, known as P.1, were recorded Friday, keeping the province’s total infection count at two.
Modelling data released by the province on Thursday suggested that the highly-contagious COVID-19 variants are expected to make up about 40 per cent of all Ontario cases by the second week of March, leading to a likely increase in daily infections and hospitalizations.
Vaccinations across the province
Meanwhile, 643,765 doses of the COVID-19 vaccine have been administered in Ontario thus far, including 21,805 administered in the previous day. The vaccine requires two doses. In Ontario, 258,014 total vaccinations have been completed as of Friday.
NOTE: The numbers used in this story are found in the Ontario Ministry of Health’s COVID-19 Daily Epidemiologic Summary. The number of cases for any city or region may differ slightly from what is reported by the province, because local units report figures at different times.
B.C. has COVID-19 under control but variant spread could lead to more restrictions – News 1130
VANCOUVER (NEWS 1130) – It doesn’t look like B.C.’s COVID-19 restrictions are going to be relaxed anytime soon, and the province’s top doctor warns that there’s even a chance British Columbians will need to clamp down further.
Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry says B.C. is holding the line on COVID-19, even though there’s been a slight uptick. However, the spread of variants continues to be top of mind for health officials.
“What I have been concerned about and what we’ve seen in other countries is that when variants of concern start building, that we can see rapid take off and rapid growth. And then we would need to consider is there other ways, other measures we need to take to stop those situations where transmission is happening,” she said Thursday.
“That’s why we’ve been paying attention to workplaces. Why we’re working with WorkSafeBC to get out there into workplaces. Why you’ve seen some of the measures we’ve been taking in places like Big White and Whistler to address the transmission events that are happening there. Paying attention to places that aren’t following adequate safety plans so that we can prevent that from happening,” Henry added.
She says the outcomes in other places around the world where variants of concern have taken hold make it clear she may have to consider stricter measures if that happens here.
With concerns that public health could be stretched thin as it was late last year, Henry admits a number of factors need to be taken into consideration before deciding whether public health orders can be eased or not.
“We have tried all along here in B.C. to keep as much open as we can safely and so keeping that balance means making sure we’re following the safety plans. Making sure we’re not making those exceptions for ourselves that lead to increased risks,” she added, pointing to a recent outbreak at a Port Moody pub which resulted in more than 300 people being affected.
Ontario reports 1,200+ coronavirus cases; 28 more deaths – CP24 Toronto's Breaking News
Ontario reported 1,258 new cases of COVID-19 and 28 deaths on Friday, also marking the first day in four months where nobody in the long-term care system died of the disease.
Ontario reported 1,138 cases of COVID-19 on Thursday and 1,054 on Wednesday.
It’s the fourth straight day of increases in the province, as all but 3 of Ontario’s 34 public health units reopened non-essential retail, restaurants and fitness centres earlier this week.
The seven-day rolling average of cases now stands at 1,114, up from 1,098 on Thursday and 1,016 eight days ago.
The number of active cases rose for the second day in a row, to 10,294, still well below our January peak of more than 30,000 active infections.
All of the deaths reported on Friday occurred outside of the long-term care system, the first time that has happened in since Oct. 26. All long-term care residents in the province have received at least one dose of an approved coronavirus vaccine.
Across the GTA, there were 362 new cases in Toronto, 274 new cases in Peel, 104 new cases in York Region, 42 in Durham, 32 in Halton and 64 in Hamilton.
Provincial labs processed 64,049 specimens in the past 24 hours, generating a positivity rate of 2.3 per cent.
Infectious disease specialist Dr. Isaac Bogoch told CP24 that Thursday’s modelling briefing, although cautiously optimistic, told us that things could still get drastically out of hand with our current daily case growth.
“It was a little more rosy, it does paint a little better picture, but we’re not out of the woods yet,” he said. “We’re still at 900-1,200 new cases per day here in Ontario, and if we do let our guard down, it will get out of control very quickly.”
Hospitalizations held flat according to official Ministry of Health statistics, which stated 683 people were in hospital, with 284 in intensive care and 193 breathing with the help of a ventilator.
But a Toronto ICU doctor citing Critical Care Services Ontario data said there were 333 patients with COVID-19 in intensive care across the province.
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