Ontario reporting more than 100 new cases of COVID-19 for fourth straight day
Chris Fox, CP24.com
Published Monday, August 24, 2020 10:28AM EDT
Last Updated Monday, August 24, 2020 11:01PM EDT
Ontario is reporting more than 100 new cases of COVID-19 for the fourth day in a row and it comes amid a notable drop in testing.
The Ministry of Health says that there were 105 new cases of the virus confirmed on Sunday.
While that number is down from the 115 cases confirmed on Saturday and the 108 cases confirmed on Friday, it actually represents a slight increase in the positive percentage due to a drop in testing that saw the number of specimens processed in Ontario labs on Sunday hit a multi-week low at just 18,790.
The positivity rate generated by the latest testing was 0.56 per cent.
Meanwhile, the seven day rolling average of new cases now stands at 109 after dropping to 83 at this point last week.
In fact after the province went an entire week without recording more than 100 new infections earlier this month, it has now surpassed that threshold on six of the last seven days.
The number of active cases also continues to increase and has shot back up above 1,000 for the first time in weeks after the number of new cases exceeded the number of new recoveries by 27 in the latest data.
Of the 105 new cases confirmed on Sunday, nearly half of them are in Toronto (30 cases) or Peel Region (21 cases) while another 14 are spread across the rest of the GTA. Ottawa also continues to experience higher levels of infection with another 24 cases confirmed in the city on Sunday.
“Regarding the numbers, I'm watching it like a hawk. I'll just break it down, today we had 105 (cases) and 75 out of the 105 cases were amongst three cities — not that they are doing anything wrong, but I just want to tell the people Ottawa, Toronto and Peel Region – you take away those three regions, and obviously that's a big population, the province and the people are doing great,” Premier Doug Ford said during his daily briefing on Monday. “In these large urban areas, we just have to keep an eye on it and it's not spread across these regions, it's in certain areas of these regions that we are really focusing on.”
Speaking at a briefing later in the day, Ontario’s Chief Medical Officer Dr. David Williams, said that he is encouraged that numbers are not climbing higher.
He likened Ontario’s current COVID-19 spread as a “slow-burning” smouldering fire rather than a forest fire and said that many of the new cases are being detected pro-actively through contract tracing by health authorities.
30 new cases in Toronto
The latest data suggests that the transmission of the virus continues to be more common among younger people with those under the age of 40 accounting for the majority of new infections (59 cases).
The good news is that hospitalizations remain lower than they have been since the outset of the pandemic with just 40 COVID-19 patients receiving care in Ontario hospitals on Sunday, 12 of whom in intensive care units.
At the height of the pandemic in April there more than 1,000 people hospital and hundreds in intensive care units.
Other highlights from the data:
- There was one more death reported over the last 24 hours. The death toll now stands at 2,798.
- There were no new cases at all reported by 19 of Ontario’s 34 public health units on Sunday.
- There was one new outbreak reported at an Ontario hospital on Sunday, bringing the total number of active outbreaks in hospital settings to three.
- There were no new outbreaks reported at long-term care homes. Of the 409 outbreaks in those settings since the beginning of the pandemic, only 11 are still considered active.
- The number of confirmed cases since the beginning of the pandemic in March now stands at 41,507.