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COVID-19 hospitalizations in Ontario drop to 751, ICU admissions remain under 250

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Ontario health officials are reporting a decrease in hospitalizations and intensive care admissions related to COVID-19 on Wednesday.

The drop in patients seeking care due to COVID-19 comes as Ontario prepares to drop its mask mandate for most indoor settings on March 21, according to multiple sources.

On Wednesday, the province logged 751 patients in hospital with COVID-19. Of those hospitalized, 241 were admitted to the ICU. This is the fourth day in a row the province is reporting under 250 ICU admissions.

The province said that, of those hospitalized, 46 per cent are seeking care due to COVID-19, while the remaining patients were admitted to the hospital for unrelated reasons and tested positive for the virus.

Within intensive care, 82 per cent of patients were admitted for COVID-19.

Another 27 deaths linked to COVID-19 were reported in Ontario, 20 of which took place in the last month. The remaining seven deaths occurred more than a month ago and were added to the cumulative count on Wednesday.

Meanwhile, Ontario is reporting 1,947 new COVID-19 cases, but health officials have warned that number is an underestimate due to restricted testing.

With 17,571 tests processed in the last 24-hours, Ontario is reporting a test positivity rate of 10.9 per cent.

The majority of infections were identified in the Greater Toronto Area. Officials are reporting 295 new cases in Toronto, 158 new cases in Peel Region, 94 new cases in York Region and 117 new cases in Durham Region.

Other areas with relatively high case counts include Ottawa (169), Simcoe Muskoka (86) and Middlesex-London (72).

The province is recording 45 residents in long-term care homes have COVID-19 along with 35 staff members. According to provincial data, six deaths were reported on Wednesday among long-term care residents. 

Background

The numbers used in this story are found in the Ontario Ministry of Health's COVID-19 Daily Epidemiologic Summary. The number of cases for any city or region may differ slightly from what is reported by the province, because local units report figures at different times.

Health experts have said the number of COVID-19 infections identified in fully vaccinated individuals will naturally increase as more people get both of their shots. 

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