Ontario logs another record-breaking number of new COVID-19 cases
TORONTO -- Ontario is reporting a significant jump in new COVID-19 cases, marking another daily record of infections.
Provincial health officials confirmed another 1,388 infections on Tuesday and 15 more deaths related to the disease.
This marks the fifth straight day in which the daily case count has hit the quadruple digits. It also marks a new record high for the province, an increase from the previous record of 1,328 set on Sunday.
There were 1,242 novel coronavirus cases reported on Monday, 1,328 Sunday, 1,132 on Saturday and 1,003 on Friday.
Ontario’s seven-day average for number of cases reported continues to climb and is now at 1,154.
According to provincial officials, there are at least 422 people being treated for COVID-19 in Ontario hospitals as of Tuesday. The province hasn’t seen a number this high since mid-June.
Of those hospitalized, 82 are in the intensive care unit (ICU) and 54 of the ICU patients are breathing with the assistance of a ventilator.
Earlier this month, the COVID-19 Modelling Collaborative, a group of scientists and clinicians from expert facilities in Toronto, predicted that Ontario may reach the 150-bed threshold for COVID-19 ICU occupancy by early December.
The provincial government has previously said that when there are less than 150 COVID-19 patients being treated in intensive care in Ontario hospitals, the province can “maintain non-COVID-19 capacity and all scheduled surgeries.”
Once the number rises above 150 it becomes harder to support non-COVID-19 needs, the government said. Once it exceeds 350 people, it becomes “impossible” to handle.
Where are the COVID-19 cases?
The majority of new COVID-19 infections were diagnosed in the Greater Toronto Area, with the City of Toronto itself marking a record high of 520 new cases.
Peel Region reported 395 new infections while York Region logged 100, and Halton Region recorded 72.
As of Tuesday, just six of Ontario’s 34 public health units reported no new cases of the disease.
Of the new cases, the majority were reported in people under the age of 60. There were 213 infections in people under the age of 19 while 901 were in people between the ages of 20 and 59.
There were 184 infections in people between the ages of 60 and 79, while only 91 reported cases were in people over the age of 80.
Despite the small case count in those over the age of 80, seniors continue to be the hardest hit by the second wave of the pandemic. Of the 3,260 deaths reported in the last year related to the novel coronavirus, 2,248 were over the age of 79.
More than 2,000 of those deaths were in long-term care homes.
Of the 15 deaths reported on Tuesday, 11 were residents of Ontario long-term care facilities.
COVID-19 testing in Ontario
Ontario is also reporting a positivity rate of 5.7 per cent, the highest positivity rate for a single 24-hour period since May 24.
Officials processed 29,125 COVID-19 tests in the last 24 hours, a slight increase from the 28,301 tests recorded Monday, but still significantly below the province’s target of 50,000 tests per day.
There remains at least 27,802 COVID-19 tests under investigation.
The total number of lab-confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Ontario now stands at 73,417, including deaths and recoveries.