Ontario reports record-breaking surge in COVID-19 cases
TORONTO -- Ontario has broken another record for the most new COVID-19 cases reported in a single day.
Health officials confirmed 732 new COVID-19 cases on Friday, bringing the provincial total to 52,980.
The previous single-day high was reported on Monday when 700 cases were logged.
Ontario also added 428 more resolved cases of the novel coronavirus on Friday.
Ontario recorded three new COVID-19-related fatalities on Friday. The province also added an additional 74 deaths, which Health Minister Christine Elliott said are due to a number of fatalities in the spring and summer that were not reported.
The majority of new cases on Friday were reported in Toronto-area health units. There are 323 new cases in Toronto and 111 in Peel Region. There were 141 new cases in Ottawa.
Fifty-eight per cent of Friday's cases are in people under the age of 40.
Ontario completed more than 40,000 tests in the previous 24-hour period, which makes Friday's positivity rate just over 1.8 per cent.
There are more than 90,500 tests still under investigation, which is a record for the province's testing backlog.
There are currently 167 patients in Ontario hospitals with COVID-19. Of those 167 patients, 38 are being treated in an intensive care unit, 21 of which are breathing with the assistance of a ventilator.
The number of patients being treated in intensive care is a critical marker for whether the province needs to implement new restrictions. Once that number rises above 150, the province says it becomes more difficult to maintain non-COVID-19 capacity and all scheduled surgeries.
According to new COVID-19 modelling released on Wednesday, the number of new cases in Ontario is now doubling every 10 to 12 days. Ontario could record 1,000 new cases per day by mid-October.
Meanwhile, the Ontario government is actively considering new regional restrictions and province-wide measures to curb the spread of COVID-19 that would affect restaurants, bars, banquets halls and gyms, CTV News Toronto has learned.
CTV News Toronto has learned Premier Doug Ford's cabinet is also reviewing a mandatory masking policy that would make it a province-wide requirement to wear a face covering in workspaces or indoor settings where physical distancing cannot be maintained.
The final decision is expected to be made as cabinet meets this morning.
Ford is expected to speak at 1 p.m. today, which CTVNewsToronto.ca will stream live.