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COVID-19: Ontario reports over 10,000 new cases

Ottawa Citizen logo Ottawa Citizen 2021-12-26 Taylor Blewett
People stood in line at a walk-in Christmas Day booster clinic at Swift Compounding Pharmacy on Christmas Day, © Provided by Ottawa Citizen People stood in line at a walk-in Christmas Day booster clinic at Swift Compounding Pharmacy on Christmas Day,

Public Health Ontario says the province has recorded more than 10,000 new daily cases of COVID-19 for the first time, the Canadian Press reports.

The 10,412 diagnoses surpass the previous record set Friday of 9,571.

Public Health Ontario is also reporting another four deaths linked to the virus.

The late evening Christmas news came as a surprise, with Ontario Health Minister Christine Elliott previously tweeting that provincial COVID-19 numbers for Dec. 25 will be shared on Boxing Day. The COVID-19 data section of the province’s website, which includes historical and other detailed data, will not update until Dec. 29.

Meanwhile, Ottawans will have to wait until after Christmas for updated numbers of new infections, hospitalizations, deaths and other closely-watched pandemic data points.

Ottawa Public Health’s daily COVID-19 dashboard will not be updated until Dec. 27, and hospitalization data won’t be refreshed until Dec. 28.

The local booster rollout, meanwhile, won’t be halting for Christmas. Kim Ayotte, the city’s general manager of emergency and protective services, said vaccination clinic operations will continue over the holidays at select locations and pharmacies.    


Video: Ontario reports more than 9,000 cases of COVID-19 (cbc.ca)

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Meanwhile, Ottawa family doctor, Dr. Nili Kaplan-Myrth, has launched a petition calling for the premier to provide free N95 or KN95 respirators to every Ontario household, as a layer of protection against the airborne transmission of COVID-19. As of Saturday, it had garnered more than 1,000 signatures.

And a reminder: Starting Boxing Day, new capacity limits will come into effect for local skating rinks, the top of tobogganing hills, trailheads, and other places where people congregate at outdoor recreational amenities in the city. Capacity will be restricted to the maximum number of people who can be accommodated while keeping two metres between them, or 25 people (whichever is lower), except for outdoor refrigerated rinks, which will have their capacity limits posted.

Everyone using an outdoor recreational amenity will have to keep at least two metres from other non-household members, and wear a mask before actively participating in the recreational activity.

City bylaw chief Roger Chapman said enforcement of rules related to COVID-19 is largely done when the branch receives complaints, but bylaw would be out “conducting proactive inspections of areas that have previously seen higher non-compliance issues.”

When a complaint comes in through 311, the branch conducts a follow-up and will issue warnings or charges, as appropriate, using information and evidence collected during an investigation, Chapman said.

He added: “We understand this is a difficult time for everyone. (Bylaw and regulatory services) continues to use their discretion where possible.”

with files from the Canadian Press

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