Medical Officer of Health Dr Eileen de Villa shared the news during a briefing at town hall on Wednesday afternoon.
She said that while the positivity rate “is just an indicator,” its recent sharp increase is cause for concern, especially when you consider rising cases and hospitalization rates.
“Today our percentage of positivity for Toronto is 4.4. It increased by 1.3%. Since I spoke to you on Monday, it was 3.1%. The figure could change further as we understand that the most recent week’s data may be incomplete, but I’m comfortable saying I have no reason to expect it to drop by 1, 3% and that I’m afraid its upward climb is not over, especially when I look at the renewed outbreak of COVID-19 in other countries, ”she warned.
The city’s seven-day positivity rate was below 1% as recently as August 30, but has increased steadily since then, along with the increase in the number of cases.
The 4.4% positivity rate reported by de Villa on Wednesday is almost double the ‘high alert’ threshold of 2.5% that the province cited in moving some areas with a higher number of cases in a modified version from step 2.
It is also well above the 3% target cited by Toronto Public Health.
“The greatest value comes from looking at the sum total of all the metrics, but unfortunately when you look at our monitoring dashboard right now the overall status is red so I ask the people of Toronto to continue with the self-protection measures, ”Villa said on Wednesday. “This situation is in our hands. We can do it together, but we must commit to doing what we know is making a difference in terms of stopping the spread of COVID-19. ”
City reports 346 new cases
In his Wednesday briefing, de Villa cited the experience of other countries that have struggled to contain COVID-19 and said nothing is stopping the virus “from catching fire here except for the choices that we do “.
She said that at this time, residents should continue to “stay away as much as possible” from people they don’t live with and make sure they wear their masks and wash their hands.
She said that this year “a lot of the diversion from COVID-19 will also be getting the flu shot,” ensuring that hospital resources are preserved.
“If he had the capacity to want COVID-19, we would want us to be exactly where we are now – tired, frustrated, impatient and exhausted to live like this,” she said. “I know I am here to urge you to move on, to ask for your patience, to try to strengthen your resolve, but in fact I am like you. I’m just as tired as everyone else of living like this, but my job is not to be so, so I’m not giving up and I’m not giving up on you.
The city reported 346 new cases of COVID-19 on Wednesday, with the total number of laboratory-confirmed cases so far having passed the 25,000 mark.
De Villa said there were also 21 more people who have been hospitalized with COVID-19 in Toronto in the past 24 hours, an increase of almost 20%.