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The COVID-19 pandemic could push indoor sports and recreation activities back to the sidelines in Ottawa this fall and winter.

As cases of novel coronavirus continue to rise in Ottawa, Medical Officer of Health Dr. Vera Etches tells CTV Morning Live she has concerns about possible COVID-19 transmission through sports activities.

"I do think that we need to take a look at recreation activities where there's groups of people indoors. That's concerning to me," said Dr. Etches Thursday morning.

"That's an opportunity if we stop those activities to have some progress in number of people in close contact would decrease. That would help."

Youth and adult sports leagues are allowed to operate in Ottawa during the COVID-19 pandemic, with physical distancing measures in place.

Return to Hockey protocols from Hockey Eastern Ontario and Hockey Canada limit teams to bubbles with a maximum number of players, coaches and trainers on the ice at one time.

Last week, Dr. Etches told reporters Ottawa Public Health was keeping an eye on the COVID-19 case count while considering possible measures for sports and recreation activities. 

"I think we need to take a look at the trajectory of our curve. If we can flatten it again that will reassure us that we can continue with some of the activities that do bring us into closer contact with each other, like hockey," said Dr. Etches following the Sept. 23 Council meeting.

"Certainly it's always most important if people are showing signs of illness to stay home and not participate in those activities. I think we'll have to keep an eye on the curve and see where it goes."