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Slower growth in COVID-19 cases, hospitalizations in Ontario: health officials

Last Updated Oct 29, 2020 at 3:47 pm EST

Ontario health officials say while COVID-19 cases continue to grow in the province, new modeling shows we are seeing a slower growth in cases and hospitalizations.

Dean of the Dalla Lana School of Public Health, Dr. Adalsteinn Brown, says they estimate we will see a steady state of between 800-1200 cases per day for a while. However, Dr. Brown said, “We are starting to see a more gentle curve as we move through.”

The province is also seeing a slower growth in hospitalizations and a more positive outlook on use of Intensive Care Units, but Dr. Brown warns things could change quickly.

The previous projections, released late last month, showed the province recording 1,000 new daily cases by mid-October.

The worst case scenario saw Ontario tracking similar to Victoria, Australia, but Dr. Brown said we are now looking closer to what’s happened in Michigan.

Victoria recently came out of 111-day lockdown on Monday after the state recorded no new infections in a 24-hour period. Meanwhile in Michigan, the number of COVID-19 cases had been gradually rising for months, from a seven-day average of 119 in June to 1,818 as of Oct. 21.

Health officials say continuing to adopt targeted measures that account for regional variations will be important in trying to contain the spread of the virus.

Earlier today, Premier Doug Ford described the latest projections as “good news” but stressed the need for a “surgical approach” to deal with COVID-19 hot spots.

Ontario passed that threshold last weekend but the numbers have since dropped below that.

The province has seen 119 new outbreaks in the province over the past seven days including 19 new ones today. Two large outbreaks were related to weddings.