Ontario reports highest daily COVID-19 case count in months with 944 new infections

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TORONTO — Ontario is reporting 944 more cases of COVID-19 today, the highest number recorded in more than three months.

The province is also logging nine new virus-related deaths today, but notes five of them occurred more than two months ago and are now being reported due to a data cleanup.

Health Minister Christine Elliott says 736 of the most recent infections are in people who are not fully vaccinated, or whose vaccination status isn't known.

She says 309 people are hospitalized with the virus, only 34 of whom are fully immunized.

Provincial data shows 172 people are in intensive care due to COVID-19, with 97 patients on a ventilator.

Elliott says the province has administered nearly 21 million doses of a COVID-19 vaccine.

Data shows nearly 83.5 per cent of residents aged 12 and up have had at least one dose of vaccine, while 76.9 per cent are fully immunized with two shots.

The province this week announced a vaccine certificate program aimed in part at boosting those numbers.

Meanwhile, a frequent COVID-19 hot spot north of Toronto has implemented new contact tracing requirements on those hosting social gatherings at home or work.

As of Saturday, York Region residents holding get-togethers must keep a list of names and contact information of all guests. If public health authorities request those details for contact tracing purposes, hosts are required to provide them within 24 hours.

The new order sanctioned by regional Medical Officer of Health Dr. Karim Kurji also states that hosts must also provide any other information requested about the gathering and ensure all provincial and local regulations are met.

“These additional measures are intended to reduce the transmission of COVID-19, facilitate timely contact tracing measures and further help to control and manage cases and outbreaks of COVID-19,” York Region Public Health said in a statement.

Failure to comply could result in charges under the Health Protection and Promotion Act and fines of up to $5,000 for every day the offence occurs.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Sept. 4, 2021.

The Canadian Press

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