Ontario reports 677 new COVID-19 cases as 7-day average continues to drop

Ontario is reporting 677 new COVID-19 cases on Thursday, as the seven-day average continues to decline. The provincial case total now stands at 581,908.

Of the 677 new cases recorded, the data showed 433 were unvaccinated people, 41 were partially vaccinated people, 148 were fully vaccinated people and for 55 people the vaccination status was unknown.

According to Thursday’s report, 136 cases were recorded in Toronto, 76 in Peel Region, 73 in York Region, 39 in Windsor-Essex, 39 in Durham Region, 38 in Hamilton, 31 in Middlesex-London, 29 in Ottawa, and 26 in Niagara Region.

All other local public health units reported fewer than 25 new cases in the provincial report.

The death toll in the province has risen to 9,677, as seven more virus-related deaths were recorded including one of those from more than a month ago due to data cleanup.

Read more: Vaccine mandates permissible as long as those with exemptions are accommodated: Ontario commission

Vaccinations, recoveries, testing, 7-day average in Ontario

As of 8 p.m. on Wednesday, 44,754 vaccines (17,685 for a first shot and 27,069 for a second shot) were administered in the last day.

There are more than 10.3 million people fully immunized with two doses, which is 79.6 per cent of the eligible (12 and older) population. First dose coverage stands at 85.5 per cent.

Meanwhile, 566,386 Ontario residents were reported to have recovered from COVID-19, which is about 97 per cent of known cases. Resolved cases increased by 676 from the previous day.

Active cases in Ontario now stand at 5,845 — down from the previous day when it was at 5,851, and is also down from Sept. 16 when it was at 6,129. At the peak of the second wave coronavirus surge in January, active cases hit just above 30,000. In the third wave in April, active cases topped 43,000.

The seven-day average has now reached 665 which is the down from yesterday’s at 692, and is also down from last week when it was 732. A month ago, the seven-day average was around 600.

The government said 37,630 tests were processed in the last 24 hours. There is currently a backlog of 21,168 tests awaiting results.

Test positivity hit 1.9 per cent. Last week, test positivity was at 2.4 per cent.

Hospitalizations in Ontario

Ontario reported 307 people in general hospital wards with COVID-19 (up by eight from the previous day) with 193 patients in intensive care units (up by six) and 168 patients in ICUs on a ventilator (up by six).

Provincial officials recently announced they would start including the vaccination status of those hospitalized due to COVID-19 as part of their daily COVID-19 data reporting. They noted the new dataset will grow and improve over time as more information is collected.

For those in general hospital wards with COVID, 119 were unvaccinated, 8 were partially vaccinated and 34 were fully vaccinated. For those in ICUs, 106 were unvaccinated while 12 were partially vaccinated and 12 were fully vaccinated.

In the third wave peak, which was the worst wave for hospitalizations, the province saw as many as 900 patients in ICUs with COVID. The province’s data has recorded 5,796 patients in total have ever been in ICU with 29,691 patients having been hospitalized due to COVID since the start of the pandemic.

Read more: Ontario COVID-19 vaccine certificate program for many indoor public settings now in effect

Variants of concern in Ontario

Officials have listed breakdown data for the new VOCs (variants of concern) detected so far in the province which consists of:

“Alpha” the B.1.1.7 VOC (first detected in the United Kingdom): 146,455 variant cases, which is up by three since the previous day. This strain dominated Ontario’s third wave.

“Delta” the B.1.617.2 VOC (first detected in India): 17,738 variant cases, which is up by 144 since the previous day. This strain is dominating Ontario’s fourth wave.

“Beta” the B.1.351 VOC (first detected in South Africa): 1,502 variant cases, which is unchanged since the previous day.

“Gamma” the P.1 VOC (first detected in Brazil): 5,229 variant cases, which is unchanged since the previous day.

NOTE: It takes several days for positive COVID-19 tests to be re-examined for the exact variant. Therefore, there may be more variant cases than overall cases in daily reporting.

More to come.

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