Ontario reports nearly 300 new COVID-19 cases as test positivity continues to drop

Ontario is reporting 296 new COVID-19 cases on Thursday, as test positivity hit its lowest point since late September. The provincial case total now stands at 531,278.

Thursday’s case count is the fourth straight day it’s below 300. On Wednesday, there were 255 new cases with 296 on Tuesday.

Test positivity for Thursday hit 1.1 per cent — the lowest test positivity since Sept. 25 when it was at 1 per cent. Yesterday, the province reported 1.2 per cent.

According to Thursday’s report, 95 cases were recorded in Waterloo, 35 new cases in Toronto, 20 in Peel Region, 19 in Hamilton, 17 in Ottawa and 16 in Durham Region.  Waterloo once again surpasses Toronto and Peel accounting for one-third of the daily count.

All other local public health units reported fewer than 15 new cases in the provincial report.

The death toll in the province has risen to 9,099 as six more deaths were recorded.

Read more: Doug Ford hints at possible early Step 2 reopening, even by a ‘matter of days’

As of 8 p.m. on Wednesday, more than 13.3 million total COVID-19 vaccine doses were administered. That marked an increase of 225,188 vaccines (26,493 for a first shot and 198,695 for a second shot) in the last day.

There are more than 3.5 million people fully vaccinated with two doses which is 29.1 per cent of the adult population. First dose adult coverage sits at 76.7 per cent.

Meanwhile, 531,278 Ontario residents were reported to have recovered from COVID-19, which is about 98 per cent of known cases. Resolved cases increased by 384 from the previous day.

There were more resolved cases than new cases on Thursday.

Active cases in Ontario now stand at 2,938 — down from the previous day when it was at 3,032, and is down from June 17 when it was at 4,390. 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 305, which is down from yesterday at 316, and is down from last week at 443. A month ago, the seven-day average was around 1,600.

The government said 29,514 tests were processed in the last 24 hours. There is currently a backlog of 11,294 tests awaiting results. A total of 15,809,936 tests have been completed since the start of the pandemic.

Ontario reported 284 people are hospitalized with COVID-19 (down by 11 from the previous day) with 300 patients in intensive care units (down by five) and 189 patients in ICUs on a ventilator (down by one). Overall, hospitalizations have been on the decline since the third wave peak in April.

Read more: Doug Ford hints at possible early Step 2 reopening, even by a ‘matter of days’

Variants of concern in Ontario

Officials have listed breakdown data for the new VOCs (variants of concern) detected so far in the province which consist of the B.1.1.7 (now named by WHO as “Alpha” and was first detected in the United Kingdom), B.1.351 (now named by WHO as “Beta” and was first detected in South Africa), P.1 (now named by WHO as “Gamma” and was first detected in Brazil), and B.1.617.2 (now named by WHO as “Delta” and was first detected in India).

“Alpha” the B.1.1.7 VOC: 142,925 variant cases, which is up by 278 since the previous day,

“Beta” the B.1.351 VOC: 1,156 variant cases, which is up by two since the previous day.

“Gamma” the P.1 VOC: 4,270 variant cases which is up by seven since the previous day.

“Delta” B.1.617.2 VOC: 1,056 variant cases which is up by 81 since the previous day.

Here is a breakdown of the total cases in Ontario by gender and age:

  • 270,681 people are male — an increase of 184 cases.
  • 268,837 people are female — an increase of 167 cases.
  • 87,302 people are 19 and under — an increase of 70 cases.
  • 203,564 people are 20 to 39 — an increase of 105 cases.
  • 155,126 people are 40 to 59 — an increase of 75 cases.
  • 72,213 people are 60 to 79 — an increase of 34 cases.
  • 25,008 people are 80 and over — an increase of 13 cases.
  • The province notes that not all cases have a reported age or gender.

Here is a breakdown of the total deaths related to COVID-19 by age:

  • Deaths reported in ages 19 and under: 4
  • Deaths reported in ages 20 to 39: 81
  • Deaths reported in ages 40 to 59: 561 (+3)
  • Deaths reported in ages 60 to 79: 2,878 (+2)
  • Deaths reported in ages 80 and older: 5,574 (+1)
  • The province notes there may be a reporting delay for deaths and data corrections or updates can result in death records being removed.

— More to come.

© 2021 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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