Ontario Premier Doug Ford Hints More Coronavirus Restrictions May Come By Easter Amid Rising Cases

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Ontario Premier Doug Ford Hints More Coronavirus Restrictions May Come By Easter Amid Rising Cases


Premier Doug Ford said his cabinet will soon discuss new public health restrictions that may need to be implemented to tackle rising COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations, telling Ontarians on Tuesday, “Don’t don’t plan for Easter.

Speaking at a press conference in Toronto on Tuesday afternoon, Ford said he “would not hesitate” to “lock things down” to protect critical care capacity as the number of patients in care intensives with COVID-19 continues to climb closer to the levels reached in the previous one. peak of the second wave in January.

“I am extremely concerned about the situation we are seeing and the increasing numbers. I’m also very concerned about the age group, the younger ones now, in the intensive care units, ”Ford said Tuesday.

“Everything is on the table so people get ready. I ask you not to make plans for Easter. Here’s what I can tell you. I will not hesitate to lock things down if necessary. I did it before, I will do it again. Nothing is more important than our health. The economy, yes, it is important but it can wait. Without the health of the people, we will have no savings. ”

According to the latest data from Critical Care Services Ontario, there are now at least 410 people with COVID-19 receiving treatment in intensive care units across the province. In the past six consecutive days, more than 2,000 new cases of COVID-19 have been reported in Ontario.

Ford said any decision on further restrictions will be made on the advice of Ontario’s chief medical officer, Dr. David Williams.

“Right off the bat, we’ll go to the chief medical officer and obviously the science table, as well as other local doctors, we’ll ask them for advice, and then the cabinet will make a decision,” Ford said.

Ford’s comments less than 24 hours after the release of a new Ontario Science Advisory Table report showing the number of people hospitalized with COVID-19 in Ontario is 21% higher than when the lockdown of the province was implemented in December.

The report also found that the most transmissible variants of concern now account for around 67% of all new COVID-19 cases and that the variants are likely leading to an increase in hospitalizations involving younger people.

According to the report, as of last week, people aged 59 and under accounted for 46% of 157 new ICU admissions. The report also found that the variants have an increased risk of hospitalization, ICU admission, and death.

The growing number of cases comes as the Ford government continued to ease restrictions in the province. In recent weeks, the province has changed its reopening framework to increase indoor dining capacity in areas in the Orange and Red zones, and reopened terrace dining in areas of the gray zone, or “lockdown”. ”, Of the multi-level framework.

The province also said it would allow the reopening of personal care services, including hair and nail salons, in gray-zone areas on April 12.

When asked why he decided to ease restrictions this month as the number of cases continued to rise, Ford said the changes in setting were made in consultation with Williams and local medical officers of health in affected areas.

“Every decision I made was made with the advice of the chief medical officer,” Ford said Tuesday.

“We were reaching less than 1,000 cases, things looked a little rosy… but I won’t hesitate to lock things down until we can protect the critical care capacities of the hospitals.”

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