Ontario reports 375 COVID-19 cases over two-day period
TORONTO -- Ontario is reporting a combined 375 new COVID-19 cases over the last two days as students return to class for the first time since March.
The number of cases includes 190 infections logged, but not released, on the holiday Monday and 185 recorded on Tuesday.
The last time the daily infection case count approached the 200 mark was on July 24.
Tuesday marks the 13th day in a row in which the number of new COVID-19 cases in Ontario has surpassed 100. The last time the case count dropped into the double digits was on Aug. 26.
Of the new patients reported over the last two days, the majority are between the ages of 20 and 39.
According to the province’s epidemiology reports, 83 of the novel coronavirus patients logged on Monday were within that age group and another 90 were recorded on Tuesday—a total of 173 cases.
In total over the two days, there were 61 cases in people under the age of 19. Seventy-nine of the patients were between the ages of 40 and 59 while 53 were between the ages of 60 and 79.
Only 11 cases were logged in people over the age of 80 on Monday and Tuesday.
The new patients come as some students across Ontario return to class for the first time since schools were shuttered in March as the province grappled with the pandemic.
Speaking on Tuesday, Ontario Education Minister Stephen Lecce called the growing COVID-19 caseload concerning, saying that everyone needs to "redouble" their efforts on physical distancing and hand hygiene.
"In the context of flu season and a possible second wave, we cannot lose focus," he said.
The new cases mark a sharp increase from the 158 cases reported on Sunday, as well as the 148 cases on Friday, 132 on Thursday, 133 on Wednesday and 112 on Tuesday.
There were no new deaths reported in the last two days.
The total number of lab-confirmed COVID-19 cases in the province now stands at 43,536, including 2,813 deaths and 36,169 recoveries.
Where are the new COVID-19 cases?
More than half of the new cases appear to have been located in the Greater Toronto Area.
Of the 190 cases reported on Monday, 57 were in Peel Region, 60 were in Toronto, and 17 were in York Region. Durham Region logged two cases and Halton Region recorded another five new cases.
Ottawa, a region that has already seen positive cases of COVID-19 at five schools, reported 28 new cases.
On Tuesday, health officials reported that 42 of the 185 new COVID-19 cases were in Peel Region while 48 were in Toronto and 19 were in York Region.
Ottawa logged an additional 37 infections.
COVID-19 testing in Ontario
Ontario Health Minister Christine Elliott said that the province processed nearly 45,000 tests over the past two days, with close to 21,000 of those tests conducted over the last 24 hours.
More than 8,000 tests are still under investigation.
The province has conducted more than 3.1 million COVID-19 tests since the first patient was diagnosed with the disease in January.