Ontario reports more than 900 new COVID-19 cases, seven-day average hit new record high

Ontario is reporting more than 900 new cases of COVID-19, a single-day increase after several days of case numbers in the 800s, but officials now say that the number may be partially inflated due to a delayed reporting of cases in Toronto.

The 936 new infections reported Thursday represent an increase over Wednesday’s total when officials reported 834 new cases and Tuesday’s total when officials reported 827 new cases.

With more than 35,600 tests performed for the disease over the last 24-hour period, Ontario's positivity rate now stands at 2.6 per cent.

The province also recorded that 10 more people have died due to the novel coronavirus in the previous 24-hour period, including five people living in long-term care homes.

The new infections bring the province's COVID-19 lab-confirmed case total to 73,819, including 63,123 resolved cases and 3,118 deaths.

Where are the new COVID-19 cases?

Ontario’s four COVID-19 hotspots continue to have the highest number of infections.

Of the new cases reported on Thursday, 420 were in Toronto, 169 were in Peel Region, 95 were in York Region and 58 were in Ottawa.

While the reported numbers in Toronto appeared to be a new record for Dr. Eileen de Villa, the city’s medical officer of health, said that they were partially inflated by about 100 cases.

“Today’s case count figure is the result of an unusually high amount of data being input after staff illnesses and deployment of other staff for training on the new provincial software system for case and contact management,” she said in a statement.

“We expect further occasional impacts on data are possible as the new system is implemented.”

Hamilton, Halton Region, Simcoe Muskoka, Durham Region, Waterloo and Niagara Region also reported new infections in the double digits.

Several regions across Ontario logged fewer than five new cases. Ten of the province's 34 public health units recorded zero new cases of COVID-19 on Thursday.

Rolling seven-day average of COVID-19 cases at highest level

The Ontario government released new COVID-19 projections today indicating that the province has moved away from its predicted worst-case scenario, despite the seven-day average creeping up.

The rolling seven-day average of cases is now at 899, which is the highest since the pandemic began.

Most of the new cases (348) added on Thursday involve people between the ages of 20 and 39. Another 279 cases were added in people between the ages of 40 and 59.

Just over 130 cases were recorded in people 19 years of age and younger, while 114 new infections were recorded in people between the ages of 60 and 79. Fifty-seven cases were recorded in people 80 years of age and older.

Health officials report that 322 people are receiving treatment for COVID-19 in Ontario hospitals, which is a slight increase over Wednesday’s report. Of those patients, 77 are in the intensive care unit and 52 are breathing with the assistance of a ventilator.

According to the provincial government, when there are less than 150 COVID-19 patients being treated in intensive care in Ontario hospitals, the province can "maintain non-COVID capacity and all scheduled surgeries."

Once that number rises above 150 it becomes harder to support non-COVID-19 needs, the government said. Once it exceeds 350 people, it becomes

Health Minister Christine Elliott said 35,621 tests were conducted in the last-recorded 24-hour period.

There are 40,074 tests that current remain under investigation in the province.

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