TORONTO -- Ontario has reported fewer than 200 new COVID-19 cases for the seventh day in a row as the province’s positivity rate falls to levels not seen since August 2020.

On Thursday, health officials logged 143 more infections, as well as 10 deaths. The new cases mark a slight decrease from the 154 infections reported on Wednesday and the 146 on Tuesday.

For the past week, Ontario has consistently seen COVID-19 case counts below 200, bringing the rolling seven-day average of daily infections to 154.

Last week that number was 192.

With just over 31,300 COVID-19 tests processed in the last 24-hour period, the province says that Ontario’s positivity rate is now at 0.5 per cent—the lowest daily reported positivity rate since Aug. 23, 2020.

There has been a consistent discrepancy in the hospital patient data reported by the province in recent weeks.

Health officials say there are 168 patients in intensive care being treated for COVID-19 in Ontario. Of those patients, 114 are breathing with the assistance of a ventilator.

In total, Ontario has identified 547,705 lab-confirmed cases of COVID-19 since January 2020.

With the additional 10 deaths reported Thursday, the total number of people who died as a result of the disease now stands at 9,275.

WHERE ARE THE COVID-19 CASES?

Only three municipalities are reporting more than 10 new COVID-19 cases on Thursday.

According to the province’s epidemiology report, there are 25 cases in Waterloo, 25 in Grey-Bruce and 20 in Toronto.

All other public health units reported fewer than 10 infections.

An additional 79 cases of the Delta variant were identified in lab-positive COVID-19 tests in the last 24-hour period, bringing the total count to 3,136.

Officials also identified 16 cases of the Gamma variant, seven cases of the Alpha variant and one additional case of the Beta variant.

7.4 MILLION PEOPLE FULLY VACCINATED

In the last 24-hour period, 166,201 doses of COVID-19 vaccines made it into the arms of Ontarians.

According to the government, more than 17.6 million doses have been administered since the vaccine rollout began.

At least 7,429,926 people have received both doses and are considered fully vaccinated.

The province is expected to move to Step 3 of Ontario’s economic reopening plan on Friday, which will allow indoor dining, gyms and movie theatres to resume operations for the first time in months.

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.