Coronavirus Canada updates: Toronto hits 1,000 COVID-19 deaths

Coronavirus: Quebec reports 1,537 new positive COVID-19 cases
Coronavirus: Quebec reports 1,537 new positive COVID-19 cases The restrictions were first put in place for Toronto, Peel and Ottawa on Friday, but have now been extended after the province recorded 407 new cases on Saturday — the most in a 24-hour stretch since June 2. It also comes a day after Ontario recorded 402 cases. Previously, gathering limits were set at 50 people indoors and 100 people outdoors. “Folks, the alarm bells are ringing,” said Ford on Saturday. “Too much of it is being tied to people who aren’t following the rules, people who think it's OK to hold parties, carrying on as if things are back to normal. They aren't. ... We can't have these wild parties right now. It's just way, way too risky.” For those who organize a gathering that exceeds the new limit, they can face a minimum fine of $10,000 under the current emergency orders. If you're caught going to one of these parties, “you can get slapped with a $750 fine,” said Ford. These new restrictions do not apply to events held in facilities such as movie theatres, restaurants, banquet halls, places of worship, gyms, or convention centers.

Toronto has reached a grim milestone in its ongoing COVID-19 outbreak, with the city’s medical officer of health confirming Toronto has now hit 1,000 deaths.

Three months ago, on March 18, the city had experienced only 16 deaths connected to the novel coronavirus.

Dr. Eileen de Villa issued a statement Thursday, calling the current death toll a “tragic milestone.

“This is an immeasurable loss experienced by so many people across our city and beyond,” she said.

“It is so important for us to take a moment, to look beyond these numbers and remember that each death represents a unique life. An individual with a personal story, who had an impact on us and our community. One thousand people have died from COVID-19 and have left behind friends, family members and neighbours.”

De Villa also said Torontonians’ commitment to public health measures has helped the city avoid what could have been a “much worse” situation.

To contextualize the death toll, she noted that 44 people from the GTA died of SARS in 2003, and each year Toronto sees about 1,000 deaths from heart attacks and cardiovascular disease.

“Sadly, given that the virus is still circulating and there is no effective treatment or vaccine, we should anticipate that we will continue to see deaths from COVID-19 in our community,” she said.

Not everything is bad news, though. While deaths and positive cases have risen steadily throughout most of the pandemic, data suggests the situation in Toronto has improved over the past several weeks.

Deaths attributed to COVID-19 have effectively plateaued since early June.

In April, Toronto was routinely reporting upwards of 20 daily deaths.

The city has recorded 13,588 total confirmed cases of the disease, of which 11,397 people have now recovered.

Ontario is reporting 2,550 deaths province-wide. However, a CBC News count based on data from regional public health units puts the real toll at at least 2,603.

The number of COVID-19 patients in hospital and on ventilators is also in a steady decline across Ontario.

Montreal has recorded the most COVID-19 deaths of any Canadian city by far, with its latest count showing 3,238 deaths.

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