Science

Ontario's new COVID cases drop below 1,000 as data issues persist

The number of new COVID-19 infections in Ontario dipped below 1,000 today but just 122 new cases were confirmed in Toronto, suggesting that there is yet another issue with the data Toronto is reporting to the province.

"Locally, there are 209 new cases in Peel, 171 in York Region and 122 in Toronto", Ontario Health Minister Christine Elliott tweeted.

Although Toronto has stated that it has found one case of the Brazilian variant, it has yet to make it into the daily provincial public health update.

But they say variant strains of COVID-19 remain a serious concern and cases will likely grow again in late February, which will lead to more admissions to intensive care units.

786 people are now hospitalized with COVID-19 in Ontario, up from 763 reported yesterday.

There are 287 COVID patients in intensive care units (down from 295) and 203 COVID patients on ventilators (down from 204 yesterday).

Provincial health officials logged 981 new cases today, down from 1,300 recorded on Saturday.

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The province reported 68,812 tests were processed yesterday resulting in a 2.3 per cent positivity rate. The last time it was that low as October 16th.

The province has reported 236 lab-confirmed cases of the United Kingdom variant strain of COVID-19 (B.1.1.7). To date, 10 million tests have been completed.

The province has reported three cases of B.1.351 (also known as the South African variant). For many days throughout the past week the province said the daily case counts were an "underestimate" due to under-reporting from TPH.

Ontario administered 14,717 more doses of the vaccine in the previous 24-hour period, and 426,836 doses in total so far in the pandemic.

The 42 additional deaths reported on Saturday push Ontario's total COVID-related death toll to 6,693.

In terms of possible causes of the new cases, PHSD reported three new cases linked to outbreak. There are eight additional admitted patients now being investigated for COVID-19 at this time.



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