Ontario reports fewer than 1,000 new COVID-19 cases for fifth straight day

Ontario health officials are reporting fewer than 1,000 new cases of COVID-19 for the fifth day in a row.

The province confirmed 914 new cases of the novel coronavirus on Friday, which comes after logging 870 new infections on Thursday, 699 on Tuesday and 733 on Wednesday.

Prior to the province’s fifth consecutive day of recording less than 1,000 new cases, Ontario’s Chief Medical Officer of Health said Thursday that he expected a potential uptick in cases on Friday, due to the Victoria Day long weekend.

"I hope we don't have a continual rise over the weekend," Dr. David Williams said on Thursday. "Getting over 1,000 again, that would be disappointing to say the least."

Ontario’s rolling seven-day average now stands at 889, a slight decline from 940 on Thursday.

With 32,258 tests processed in the past 24 hours, the Ministry of Health says the positivity rate remained at 2.8 per cent on Friday.

Health officials reported 19 more deaths due to COVID-19 over the last 24-hour period, which brings the total number of fatalities to 8,820.

Currently in Ontario, 687 people are in the hospital due to the disease, with 522 patients in intensive case units. At least 357 of those in the ICU are breathing with the help of a ventilator.

Ontario reported 1,397 COVID-19 cases were resolved as of Friday, which raises the province’s number of total recovered cases to 516,396.

WHERE ARE THE COVID-19 CASES IN ONTARIO?

The majority of COVID-19 cases in the province are concentrated in the Greater Toronto Area. Ontario reported 214 new COVID-19 cases in Toronto, 169 in Peel Region, 69 in Durham Region and 31 in York Region.

Throughout the province, officials logged an additional 1,248 cases of the B.1.1.7 variant, first discovered in the United Kingdom, in lab-positive tests. In total, 129,807 cases of the variant have been recorded in the province.

Ontario officials recorded 18 new cases of the B.1.351 variant, first reported in South Africa, which brings the variant’s cumulative case count in the province to 972.

Officials also added 46 new cases of P.1, otherwise known as the Brazilian variant, which brings the total number of cases in the province to 2,967.

At the moment, Ontario does not track the B.1.617 variant, also known as the “delta” variant discovered in India. Earlier this week, Peel Region's Medical Officer of Health Dr. Lawrence Loh said that within a month, the variant could become the dominant strain in Peel.

MORE THAN 896K PEOPLE FULLY VACCINATED IN ONTARIO

In Ontario, 896,065 people are fully vaccinated after receiving two doses of a COVID-19 vaccine, according to officials.

Over the last 24-hour period, 168,322 COVID-19 vaccine doses have been administered across the province, bringing the total number of inoculations in Ontario to 9.6 million.