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Ontario logs fewer than 500 new COVID-19 cases for first time in 8 months

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TORONTO -

Ontario’s daily COVID-19 case count has dipped below the 500 mark for the first time in just over eight months.

Health officials logged 469 new infections on Tuesday, as well as 18 deaths related to the novel coronavirus.

The last time the case count was this low was on Sept. 26, 2020, when 435 COVID-19 cases were reported.

Tuesday also marks the ninth day in a row in which Ontario’s daily case count has been below 1,000.

The seven-day rolling average of daily reported COVID-19 cases continues to decline and now stands at about 679, down from 1,029 a week ago.

There are 621 people being treated for the novel coronavirus in Ontario hospitals. At least 481 of those patients are in intensive care.

With 17,579 tests processed in the last 24-hour period, the Ministry of Health says the province’s positivity rate now stands at 2.7 per cent.

The decline in COVID-19 cases over the past week resulted in an earlier reopening for Ontario, with the government announcing Monday that the province would move into Step 1 three days earlier.

On Friday, outdoor gatherings of up to 10 people will be allowed and patios will be able to open their doors. Non-essential retail will also be allowed to reopen with strict capacity limits.

The total number of lab-confirmed positive cases of COVID-9 in Ontario now stands 537,076, including deaths and recoveries.

WHERE ARE THE COVID-19 CASES?

The majority of cases are found in Toronto (182) and Peel Region (76).

The province is reporting zero cases in York Region, but says that the case counts appear to be the result of data cleaning and updating previously reported cases.

Aside from York Region, there are eight public health units with no new COVID-19 cases, while all other municipalities are reporting fewer than 50 infections.

According to the province’s epidemiology report, 1,010 cases of the B.1.1.7. variant were identified in lab-positive tests in the previous 24-hours. These new cases bring the total number of B.1.1.7. variants in Ontario to 133,706.

The province also identified an additional 30 cases of the P.1. variant.

Ontario is not publicly reporting cases of the B.1.617 variant originally found in India.

MORE THAN 1.1 MILLION PEOPLE FULLY VACCINATED

The province administered just over 158,200 vaccine doses in the last 24-hour period.

In total, more than 10.3 million vaccine doses have made it into the arms of Ontarians. Just over 1.1 million people have received two shots and are considered fully vaccinated.

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.

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