TORONTO -- Ontario has logged fewer than 600 new COVID-19 cases for the third day in a row and officials say the majority of infections continue to be identified in unvaccinated people.

On Wednesday officials reported 554 new infections as well as 16 more deaths related to the disease.

The Ministry of Health says that the increase in deaths is the result of a data catch up and that 11 occurred in the last week, with the remaining five more than a week ago.

The new infections mark a slight decrease from the 581 cases reported on Tuesday and the 564 cases reported on Monday. Prior to Monday, the province logged five consecutive days in which the daily case count was above the 600 mark.

The rolling seven-day average of daily cases now stands at about 732, up from 728 a week ago.

With 21,840 COVID-19 tests processed in the last 24-hour period, the Ministry of Health says that Ontario’s positivity rate is about 3.3 per cent.

Of the new cases reported Wednesday, the Ministry of Health says that 418 were found in people who were not fully vaccinated or whose status was unknown.

There are 194 patients being treated for COVID-19 in Ontario intensive care units. Of those patients, 186 are not fully vaccinated or have an unknown vaccination status. One hundred and fifteen people are breathing with the assistance of a ventilator.

There have been 571,332 lab-confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Ontario since the beginning of the pandemic, including deaths and recoveries.

WHERE ARE THE COVID-19 CASES?

The majority of new COVID-19 cases reported Wednesday can be found in Toronto, however numerous public health units across Ontario are reporting more than 10 new infections.

Of the new infections, 149 are in Toronto, 46 in Peel Region, and 41 in York Region. Windsor-Essex is also reporting a case count above 40 with 47 new COVID-19 cases.

Other municipalities with more than 10 new cases include Niagara (33), Durham (25), Simcoe-Muskoka (25), Halton (24), Ottawa (22), Hamilton (21), Wellington-Dufferin-Guelph (21), Waterloo (20), Catham-Kent (16), and Middlesex-London (15).

MORE THAN 21 MILLION DOSES OF VACCINE ADMINISTERED

The province also reached a new vaccine milestone on Wednesday with more than 21 million shots in arms.

About 77.4 per cent of elilgible people aged 12 and up in Ontario have received both doses of a vaccine, while 83.9 per cent have received one shot.

On Tuesday, Ontario’s chief medical officer of health said that 90 per cent of eligible Ontarians must be fully vaccinated with at least two doses in order to combat the spread of the Delta variant. He added that he expects it to take upwards of two months for that to take place.

“We are still making slow progress but if we stay at this pace to get to a high enough protection level, so over 90 per cent, it could take an additional 60 days,” Dr. Kieran Moore said at a briefing.

“I do hope we'll have an uptick in the near future. After a long weekend like this we normally do see the increase in cases of COVID-19 later in the week and I think once people realize this virus isn't going away and the risk will continue throughout the fall and into the winter that alone should be an incentive to come forward and get protected.”

An additional 361 cases of the Delta variant were identified in lab-confirmed COVID-19 cases, bringing the total number of infections to 13,008.

Backstory:

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.