Ontario’s vaccine verification app for businesses, Verify Ontario, appears to be ready for download ahead of schedule, and will roll out to Google and Apple app stores on Thursday afternoon.According to its description, the app gives businesses and organizations the ability to scan QR codes on vaccination certificates issued by the province. Once the code is scanned, a green check mark will appear indicating a valid vaccine certificate, a red X for an invalid certificate, or a yellow warning for a QR that cannot be read.
The province had announced that it would release a digital verification app by Oct. 22, giving people a “safer, more secure and more convenient” way to demonstrate that they have been vaccinated, according to the province.
“To ensure the app is available to businesses and organizations in real time tomorrow, the verification app has been added to app stores today,” Premier Doug’s press secretary said Thursday. Ford, Ivana Yelich.
Ontarians still have the option of using paper vaccination receipts to prove their immunization status.
The app’s description indicates that it also scans most QR codes issued by the government of British Columbia and Quebec, and that nationwide capabilities are “under development.”
It also states that it does not ask for specific user locations or collect information linking visitors, businesses, or locations to each other.
Ford is expected to talk about the enhanced vaccine certificate and verification app on Friday morning.
Meanwhile, the province on Thursday reported 417 new cases of COVID-19 and the deaths of three more people with the disease.
The number of people being treated for COVID-related illness in intensive care units across the province rose from 153 to 158, a second day of increase. About 64% of these patients required ventilators.
Critical Care Services Ontario says 13 adults with COVID-related symptoms were admitted to intensive care units on Wednesday, and the seven-day average of COVID-19 patients in intensive care units stands at 153.
Meanwhile, the steady decline in new cases that started around September 5 continued with today’s numbers. The seven-day average of daily cases fell to 476, its lowest point since mid-August.
Speaking to reporters on Thursday, Moore said it was too early to know the impact of Thanksgiving weekend on the province’s COVID numbers, but said he hopes the numbers will stay low, pointing to the next seasons of Diwali and Christmas.
The numbers come after CBC News first announced that the Ontario government will announce next week its intention to step out of the “roadmap to reopening.” Further easing of pandemic measures will include removing capacity limits in all places where proof of vaccination requirements are in place, such as restaurants, bars and gyms, a senior said on Wednesday. government official.
The official declined to say when the relaxed measures will take effect. Dr. Peter Jüni, scientific director of the Ontario COVID-19 Scientific Advisory Table, said it would be a key part of the plan.
In an interview with CBC Radio Metro morning On Thursday, Jüni said the province would have to wait at least three weeks before making further changes. That’s because the government announced last Friday that it was lifting capacity limits at some major sites while continuing to impose restrictions on small businesses, a move Jüni called “an” experiment.
“The point is, now, no one knows how this will affect the pandemic. We should wait three weeks to figure out what’s going on and then move on to the next step. But I know the pressure is very high, ”he said.
The policy change was immediately challenged by small business groups, such as the Ontario Chamber of Commerce and the Canadian Federation of Independent Business.
Critics called on the province to explain its reasoning, saying businesses like restaurants, gyms, yoga and dance studios, swimming and martial arts halls, and bowling alleys continue to see their ability to clientele limited to 50%. Likewise, restaurants must maintain a physical distance of two meters between tables.
Jüni said he would like the government to wait until the potential impacts of capacity changes for major sites appear in the pandemic data. He added that he was particularly concerned about the lifting of distancing measures at restaurants.
Ontario is not currently experiencing exponential growth in the number of new cases.
“We’re in a place right now where, if we don’t move forward on our own and just keep doing what we have been doing – continuing to mask ourselves and have the vaccine certificates in place – this could all work very well. . But we have to be prepared that things can change very quickly. “
If new cases were to start doubling every eight or nine days, that would indicate capacity limits may need to be reimposed in some settings, Jüni said.
The forecast is complicated by the imminent onset of winter, he added. It’s hard to predict how Ontario’s current level of immunization coverage, nearly 83 percent of all ages 12 and older, might work to prevent people from spending more time indoors, he said. .
126 new school-related cases reported
Here are some other indicators and key figures of the pandemic of Daily provincial update from the Ministry of Health:
New school-related cases: 126. About 93 percent were students. Four of the 4,844 publicly funded schools in Ontario are closed due to COVID-19.
Tests carried out in the last 24 hours: 35,421, with a positivity rate of 1.5%.
Active cases: 4,022, of which about a third is associated with the public school system.
Vaccination: 28,756 doses were administered by public health units on Wednesday. For a second day, more than 10,000 of them were first shots.