Ontario Premier Doug Ford has announced that as of Monday, Oct. 19, York Region will move into the “modified” Stage 2 of COVID-19 restrictions for a period of 28 days.
Just like Toronto, Peel and Ottawa, this will include the closure gyms, indoor dining and cinemas. Limits on social gatherings and organized public events is also being reduced to a maximum of 10 people indoors and 25 people outdoors, where physical distancing can be maintained.
“By all accounts, the indicators are going in the wrong direction,” Ford said. “We’re seeing a rapid increase in the rate of infection with the positivity rate of 2.77 per cent above the high alert threshold of 2.5 per cent.”
“Most concerning of all, critical care admissions are reaching alarming levels.”
The premier repeatedly said he “hates” adding these restrictions but “we need to avoid a full lockdown.”
Ford also commented on people travelling from more restricted areas of Ontario to less restricted areas. He said people shouldn’t be doing that, especially to go to gyms or other fitness facilities.
“Try to stay at home…It’s just going to spread even more,” the premier said. “Stay within your area.”
On Friday, Ontario reported 712 new COVID-19 cases with 213 in Toronto, 135 in Peel, 108 in Ottawa and 62 in York Region. There are currently 261 with the virus in hospitals, 67 in ICU.
‘We do not have any problem with the supply’
With people across Canada being encouraged to get the flu shot as COVID-19 continues to spread, Ontario’s Deputy Premier and Minister of Health Christine Elliott reassured the public that there isn’t a “shortage” of flu vaccine, although many pharmacies have been running out of supply.
“Everyone who wants to receive a flu shot will be able to get one,” Elliott said. “They will be receiving regularly scheduled shipments.”
She added that the “good news” in this situation is that people are very eager to get the flu shot these year.
“We do not have any problem with the supply,” Elliott said. “They are coming in on schedule from global manufacturers.”