Ontario reports just over 700 new COVID-19 cases as positivity rate drops
TORONTO -- Ontario health officials are reporting just over 700 new cases of COVID-19, marking a third straight day with infection numbers below 1,000.
The province confirmed 733 new cases of the novel coronavirus on Wednesday, which comes after officials logged 699 cases on Tuesday and 916 on Monday.
Tuesday’s daily case count was the lowest seen since Oct. 18, 2020 when officials reported 658 new cases of the disease.
Ontario’s rolling seven-day average now stands at 978, down from 1,622 at this point last week.
With 31,768 tests processed in the past 24 hours, the Ministry of Health says the positivity rate dropped from 3.6 per cent on Tuesday to 2.8 per cent on Wednesday.
Ontario also added 25 COVID-19-related deaths in the previous 24-hour period, bringing the total number of fatalities to 8,791.
There are currently 708 people in hospital due to the disease. At least 576 of these patients are in intensive care and 399 are breathing with the assistance of a ventilator.
The province deemed 1,733 more cases of the disease to be resolved as of Wednesday, bringing Ontario’s number of recovered patients up to 513,436.
Wednesday’s report brings the total number of lab-confirmed cases in Ontario to 532,891, including deaths and recoveries.
WHERE ARE THE COVID-19 CASES IN ONTARIO
Most of the new cases reported are concentrated in hot spot regions in the Greater Toronto Area. Officials reported 173 new cases in Toronto, 134 new cases in Peel Region, 69 new cases in York Region, 66 new cases in Hamilton and 40 new cases in Durham Region.
The province confirmed an additional 938 new cases of B.1.1.7 (U.K. variant) in Ontario on Wednesday. The total case count for the strain now stands at 127,645.
Officials identified three new cases of B.1.351 (South African variant), bringing the total case count in the province to 952.
In addition, the province added 44 more cases of P.1 (Brazilian variant), which brings its total number of cases to 2,911.
Ontario does not currently report how many cases of the B.1.617 variant, originally found in India, are found in the province.
After two months, Ontario’s stay-at-home order officially expired on Wednesday. However, the province isn’t set to begin Step 1 of its reopening plan until June 14 at the earliest.
MORE THAN 781K PEOPLE FULLY VACCINATED IN ONTARIO
The province reports that 781,163 people in Ontario have received both doses of a COVID-19 vaccine and are now considered vaccinated against the disease.
In the last 24-hour period, officials said 139,901 doses of the vaccine were administered Ontario residents. Officials have repeatedly said they have the capacity to give about 150,000 vaccines a day.
Just over 9.3 million vaccine doses have been administered in the province since the rollout began earlier this year.
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