Ontario heading into another COVID-19 wave, expert says

Wednesday, March 30, 2022
author picture Gerald Girard
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Original content created by news.limited staff

The recent outbreak of COVID-19 has the province facing a potential sixth COVID 19 wave. According to the Chief Public Health Director‚ the number of cases and hospitalizations have remained steady across the country‚ but has risen in several jurisdictions. Data from the state wastewater department of Ontario and Alberta shows that the virus has returned to portions of the province. While the number of new cases and hospitalizations is still low‚ the overall case count is expected to rise significantly. The province has reported more than 300 cases a day for the past four days‚ including six in the ICU on Sunday. There were more than 400 cases of COVID-19 in Ontario on Tuesday. Although this figure represents the latest numbers‚ experts say it is likely to be an underestimate of the virus's spread. A major part of the problem lies in the fact that testing for the illness is limited‚ and only about one in four patients are positive. The province is now facing an outbreak of the disease‚ and experts say the province has a good chance of surviving. The first wave of the disease is relatively rare‚ and Ontario's vaccination rate is very high. But the second wave is growing in severity and is likely to continue through at least the remainder of the year. Currently‚ there are 790 confirmed cases of COVID in Ontario‚ up about 20% from Monday. In addition‚ there are 10 patients in the intensive care unit‚ which means there is a greater risk of the virus spreading from person to person. The fourth wave of COVID-19 has been in Toronto for just over a month. The number of new infections each day has increased by fivefold‚ and the city has a good vaccination rate. Vaccinations are important for public health units to prevent hospitalizations and deaths. However‚ despite the high vaccination rate‚ many communities are rejecting the mandated vaccines that are necessary to prevent an outbreak. The fourth wave of COVID-19 has been seen in Toronto. On Tuesday alone‚ seventy-eight people were hospitalized‚ including 48 in intensive care. Despite the high vaccination rate‚ the outbreak continues to increase and is now the most serious to date. But the government has been resisting the imposition of a mandatory vaccine‚ which has led to the emergence of a third wave of the virus. Currently‚ 80 percent of people over the age of 12 have received the first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine. In Ontario‚ however‚ the disease hasn't reached this point in the province yet. The CDC reports that a total of 77 people have contracted the virus in Canada during the fifth wave. While the number of cases is declining overall‚ the number of cases in Ontario continues to rise. The province's COVID 19 death toll dropped to 77 this week‚ a 40% decrease from the previous week. It is the lowest death toll since Week 29. This week's death toll was lower in Quebec‚ where only 37 people were hospitalized‚ compared to 83 deaths in the prior week. And Ontario is in a position to weather the wave. If it is to survive‚ the province needs to continue vaccination of children and adults. It is also important to note that Ontario is still in the early stages of its fourth COVID-19 wave‚ with more than a thousand new infections each day. In a month‚ the daily COVID-19 outbreak in Toronto has reached five times the number of infections it reported in a month. But the city has a high vaccination rate‚ and this can help prevent the disease from spreading. The province has to implement mask laws and closures to halt the outbreaks. While the province has made progress in vaccination‚ it is still a long way from full vaccination. Meanwhile‚ the government is focusing its efforts on the Delta subvariant‚ which may be more difficult to detect and treat. The Canadian government has stepped up its efforts in Quebec by expanding its COVID-19 vaccine programs to young people and targeted hotspots. In addition to this‚ it is expanding the program to include the subvariant BA.2 and has also started to introduce a proof-of-vaccination system for young children.