Ottawa Public Health is reporting its lowest number of new COVID-19 cases in a week.
In its COVID-19 dashboard update on Tuesday, OPH reported 13 more people in Ottawa have tested positive for COVID-19 and one more person has died. The last time numbers were below 20 was on Dec. 8, when 18 new cases were reported.
This comes amid changes to data extraction methods at the provincial level that gave Ottawa a negative case count on Tuesday.
Health Minister Christine Elliott said the province made the change Tuesday, which led to an increase in the number of cases reported across Ontario.
Speaking on Newstalk 580 CFRA’s “Ottawa at Work with Leslie Roberts”, Elliott said the numbers are still concerning, despite the data adjustment.
“One of the issues relating to the numbers today is that there were two areas that just signed on to our new digital system and there was just a bit of a reorganization and we ended up having two-and-a-half extra hours for the numbers to be counted, so that’s one explanation for the higher numbres,” Elliott said. “Notwithstanding that, we’re still watching it very carefully in a number of parts of Ontario.”
However, Ottawa’s figure fell by nine cases in Ontario’s report. On Monday, Public Health Ontario said its total case count in Ottawa was 9,111 since the pandemic began. The province now says there have been 9,102 total COVID-19 cases.
Elliott said the provincial figure for Ottawa will be adjusted.
“We will have a better idea, I think, tomorrow of where the numbers actually are,” she said.
OPH told CTV News by email late last week that a realignment of databases was underway, which was leading to data discrepancies between local and provincial health authorities.
“In an effort to streamline efforts and align various data sources, Ottawa Public Health (OPH) is aligning its database with the provincial database, and as can be expected, there is a transition period as redundant cases are removed and individuals are properly assigned to their jurisdictions outside Ottawa (if applicable),” OPH said. “Given several factors, it is often the case that reported numbers from public health units do not match provincial data during a specific snapshot in time. This is mainly due to time lag.”
According to OPH, there have been 9,118 total laboratory-confirmed cases of COVID-10 in the city since the pandemic began.
Ottawa’s death toll from COVID-19 now stands at 387 residents.
OTTAWA COVID-19 STATUS: ORANGE-RESTRICT
Ottawa remains in the “Orange-Restrict” level under the provincial reopening framework. Ottawa moved into the restriction level on Nov. 7.
The “Orange-Restrict” level is for areas with a weekly rate of new cases per 100,000 people of between 25 and 39.9, a positivity rate between 1.3 per cent and 2.4 per cent and a reproduction number of 1 to 1.1.
Here is where Ottawa stands on those metrics currently:
COVID-19 cases per 100,000 (previous seven days): 30.2
Positivity rate in Ottawa: 1.4 per cent (Dec. 7 to 13)
Reproduction Number: 1.00 (seven day average)
The “Yellow-Protect” level requires a weekly rate of new cases per 100,000 people of between 10 and 24.9, a positivity rate between 0.5 per cent and 1.2 per cent and a reproduction number of “approximately 1”, according to the province.
ACTIVE CASES OF COVID-19 IN OTTAWA
The number of people with active cases of COVID-19 in Ottawa fell on Tuesday
OPH says there are 364 people with active infections, down from 388 in Monday’s report.
Thirty-six new recoveries were reported on Tuesday, bringing Ottawa’s number of total resolved cases to 8,367.
The number of active cases is the number of total lab-confirmed cases minus the numbers of resolved cases and deaths. A case is considered resolved 14 days after known symptom onset or positive test result.