Health Minister Christine Elliott said 500 new cases were found in Toronto, along with 318 in Peel, 155 in York Region and 114 in Hamilton. The seven-day average, which smooths out peaks and troughs in the data, is now 1,600. These cases are accompanied by approximately 31,100 tests completed, which is well below the capacity of the province. Test numbers typically drop over the weekend, before increasing later in the week.
The province is reporting three new deaths of people with COVID-19, as well as 1,175 cases that have been marked as resolved. The toll of the pandemic is now 7,244 dead.
There are 813 people in the hospital, up from 765 the day before – and it is with the caveat that this figure is generally underreported on weekends.
There are also 298 people in intensive care, 186 of whom are on ventilators, according to the province. That’s slightly down from 302 and 189 the day before, respectively.
By 8 p.m. as of Sunday, the province had administered just over 1.5 million doses of the vaccine, Elliott said. There were 31,335 vaccines given on Sunday, with 299,297 now fully vaccinated.
At a press conference Monday afternoon, Premier Doug Ford said the province was making “huge progress” on its vaccination plans and praised the work of frontline health workers.
“We are very grateful to them for the vital role they have played in the fight against this virus,” he said.
The Premier once again urged the federal government to provide more doses of the vaccine, saying Ontario needs a more regular supply.
“We are at a fraction of our capacity. We need more vaccines, ”he said.
Dr. David Williams, the province’s chief medical officer of health, will provide an update at 3 p.m. on the pandemic in Ontario. You can watch this update live in this story.
Other public health units that saw double-digit increases in COVID-19 cases were:
- Ottawa: 85
- Durham: 79
- Simcoe Muskoka: 64
- Halton: 57
- Lambton: 42
- Eastern Ontario Health Unit: 39
- Sudbury: 34
- Waterloo: 31
- Niagara: 24
- Thunder Bay: 16
- Windsor-Essex: 16
- Brant County: 15
- Wellington-Dufferin-Guelph: 14
- Kingston, Frontenac and Lennox & Addington Public Health: 13
- Leeds, Grenville and Lanark District Health Unit: 12
- Southwestern Public Health: 11
- Middlesex-Londres: 11
- Chatham-Kent: 10
(Note: All numbers used in this story can be found on the Department of Health’s COVID-19 dashboard or in its Daily epidemiological summary. The number of cases for an area may differ from what is reported by the local public health unit on any given day because local units report the numbers at different times.
Meanwhile, residents of Ontario aged 75 or older can begin reserving their COVID-19 vaccines through the government’s online system starting today.
People in this age group were initially expected to become eligible by the first week of April, but the province announced last week it was postponing the date, saying vaccinations were ahead of schedule.
Likewise, York Region announced that it is now offering vaccine appointments for residents 70 and older, born in 1951 and before, effective March 23.
Also effective today, certain pharmacies and family physicians in certain areas will be permitted to administer the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine to anyone 60 years of age or older.
Ford said Monday the province plans to expand the pilot project, with a focus on Peel Region and Toronto.
“We’re going to double the number of pharmacies to 750,” Ford said.
A number of regions are also moving to varying levels of restriction as part of the province’s color-coded pandemic on Monday.
The regions of Brant, Chatham-Kent and Leeds, Grenville and Lanark are now in the red zone – the second most restrictive.
Wellington-Dufferin-Guelph is now in orange, and four more – Timiskaming, Porcupine, North Bay Parry Sound and Kingston, Frontenac and Lennox & Addington – are in yellow.