Ontario reported 1,417 new COVID-19 cases on Wednesday and 32 new deaths, the highest daily death toll reported since June 19.

But the number of net active infections declined for the first time in weeks, buoyed by strong growth in recoveries.

“Locally, there are 463 new cases in Peel, 410 in Toronto and 178 in York Region," Health Minister Christine Elliott on Twitter.

Ontario reported 1,249 cases of COVID-19 on Tuesday, 1,487 cases on Monday, 1,248 cases on Sunday and 1,581 on Saturday.

Provincial labs processed 33,440 specimens in the past 24 hours, generating a positivity rate of 4.5 per cent when duplicate tests and errors are taken into account.

One-hundred and forty people have died of the virus in the past week.

The province reported 41 deaths on Oct. 3, but 37 of those were the result of a data cleanup initiative documenting missed deaths from the spring.

There are now 12,822 active cases of novel coronavirus infection across Ontario, down 110 cases from Tuesday but up from 10,631 one week ago.

Infectious diseases specialist Dr. Isaac Bogoch said the situation in Ontario is not positive at the moment.

“We just have to be realistic about where we are right now, where we’re headed in several parts of the province and what that means for where we’ll be in mid to late December,” he told CP24. “Unfortunately I don’t think we are going to see drastic improvements between now and then.”

Asked if all of Ontario could progress to the lowest tier of the province’s restrictions framework by Christmas, as Ontario’s Chief Medical Officer suggested this week, Bogoch said he is “significantly doubtful” that could happen.

Elsewhere in the GTA, Durham Region reported 40 new cases, Halton Region reported 63 and Hamilton reported 46.

Meanwhile, hospital occupancy continued to grow.

There were 535 people in hospital receiving treatment for COVID-19 symptoms on Wednesday, up 6 from Tuesday.

Of those, 127 were in intensive care and 78 were breathing with the help of a ventilator.

But Michael Garron Hospital Dr. Michael Warner shared a portion of Critical Care Ontario’s COVID-19 Daily Report, which is not shared with the public, that showed 135 people were in intensive care on Nov. 17.