Coronavirus Canada Updates: Ottawa reports 62 new cases, no new deaths; Ontario sees 1,185 new cases

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Coronavirus Canada: Quebec eases restrictions in some regions, maintains Montreal at highest alert level
Coronavirus Canada: Quebec eases restrictions in some regions, maintains Montreal at highest alert level

Ottawa Public Health reported 62 new cases Saturday. There were no new deaths and the city’s death toll remains 439.

There have been 14,650 cases in Ottawa and of those, 13,723 are now considered resolved.

There are now 488 active cases in the city, an indicator showing a rising trend in recent weeks after steady declines through early February.

There are 24 patients in hospital and seven in ICU.

Ottawa’s statistics remain remains at the Orange (Restrict) level in the province’s framework, though in an update to council last week, Dr. Vera Etches cautioned that the city could soon be headed into the Red (Control).

OPH is to meet with the province this week to discuss whether the city should return to the Red level of restrictions, which Etches called “a real possibility.”

Those indicators had been trending the wrong direction, but there have been some encouraging signs in data released in recent days.

Ottawa’s daily test positivity was 1.7 per cent in the last 24 hours, and the weekly average has again declined slightly to 2.0 per cent. That weekly rate must remain below 2.4 per cent to remain in Orange.

Ottawa’s weekly average rate of infection is trending up, however, with a slight increase from 34.7 to 35.0 cases per 100,000 population over the last 24 hours. That rate must remain under 40 cases per 100,000 population to remain in Orange.

The R(t) number — another key indicator measuring the secondary cases generated by a single confirmed COVID-19 infection — must be between 1.0 and 1.1 to remain in Orange.

Ottawa’s R(t) number has remained relatively flat, hovering around 1.0 for much of February, and has now dipped below that threshold with an average 0.98 score over the past week.

Any number above 1.0 indicates the virus is spreading in the community, any score under 1.0 indicates the spread is coming under control.

On the vaccination front, Ottawa received another 4,000 Moderna doses on Thursday, and has now administered 49,125 of the 61,820 total doses the city has received.

Province

Ontario is reporting 1,185 new laboratory-confirmed COVID-19 cases Saturday and 16 related deaths.

The Greater Toronto Area remains a provincial hotspot, with 331 new cases identified in Toronto Saturday and 220 new cases in Peel. Both regions remain under lockdown orders.

York region reported 119 new cases.

There were 67 new cases in Ottawa, according to provincial data.

There are often discrepancies between Ontario’s daily case counts and those logged by local public health units while the province is completing its data migration to a central system. Ottawa Public Health is using its own system in the meantime, which pulls local data each afternoon and reports the numbers around 12:30 p.m. the following day. OPH says its data is typically the most up-to-date.

In surrounding regions, the Eastern Ontario public health unit reported seven new cases Saturday, a day after 11 new infections were confirmed in the area on Friday.

There were five new cases in Hastings, one in Kingston and three in Renfrew County.

Renfrew saw its largest single-day spike in cases with 10 confirmed infections on Friday, prompting a stern warning from acting medical officer of health Dr. Robert Cushman.

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