COVID-19: Ontario reports 656 new cases, 20 in Ottawa; Vaccine Hunters wind down ops

Article content

Ontario reported 656 new COVID-19 cases on Wednesday, and 13 new deaths.


Article content

Six of the newly reported deaths occurred more than two months ago.

There are 339 COVID patients currently in Ontario hospitals, including 163 patients in ICU with COVID-related illnesses, and 96 on ventilators with COVID-related illnesses.

Toronto, with 158 new cases, York, with 76, and Hamilton, with 73, were the province’s worst-hit regions.

In other health units in the capital region, the Eastern Ontario Health Unit saw its confirmed case numbers go up by four while Leeds, Grenville and Lanark reported no new cases, as did Kingston. Renfrew County, meanwhile, saw its overall case count drop by one.

The new figures raise Ontario’s total number of COVID cases since January 2020 to 566,206 and its death toll to 9,516. There are 15,377 active cases in the province.


Article content

Additionally, 34,703 vaccine doses were administered in the province in the 24-hour period ending Tuesday evening, for a province-wide total of 20,757,954. A total of 9,964,336 Ontarians have been fully vaccinated, an increase of 21,502 over the previous day’s total.

Overall, 83 per cent of eligible Ontarians have had at least one shot, while 76 per cent have received two.

Ontario residents will have to show proof of full vaccination to access indoor dining, bars, casinos, bingo halls, sports facilities, sporting events and more beginning on Sept. 22.

The province announced a long-anticipated plan Wednesday that would make full vaccination mandatory for many non-essential businesses and services.

The province says it will have a digital vaccine certificate that can be scanned by businesses ready by Oct. 22.


Article content

Latest COVID-19 news in Ottawa

Ottawa Public Health reported 20 new COVID-19 cases on Wednesday and no new deaths, bringing the total number of COVID cases in the city to 28,373 since the pandemic started, while the death toll remains unchanged at 593.

There are currently 225 active cases in Ottawa, a decrease of two from the previous day. Of those, 10 people are in hospital with COVID, one in intensive care.

The city’s seven-day rolling average of cases, meanwhile, is 19.6 per 100,000 population.

Ottawa’s seven-day positivity rate in testing is 1.9 per cent, while the seven-day reproduction rate, R(t), is 0.99, indicating that the virus’s spread is slightly decreasing.

As of 3 a.m. Wednesday, 86 per cent of Ottawans 12 and over had received at least one vaccine dose, while 79 per cent were fully vaccinated.


Article content

There is one new active outbreak reported in Ottawa, with two cases identified at Little School day care.

Of the new cases in Ottawa in the past 30 days that have been identified by their variant or mutation, 87 per cent were from the Delta variant.

Latest COVID-19 news in Quebec

In Quebec, 690 new COVID cases were confirmed Wednesday, and two new deaths.

It was the province’s highest number of daily new cases since mid-May.

The new figures bring the province’s overall case count to 389,914 since the pandemic began, and its death toll to 11,288.

There are 138 COVID patients hospitalized in Quebec, including 40 in intensive care.

Additionally, the province administered 24,734 vaccine doses in the most recent 24-hour reporting period, for a province-wide total of 12,366,735.


Article content

As of Wednesday, Quebecers must show proof of vaccination to take part in a variety of activities and to enter a variety of places.

The province says the measure will reduce the spread of COVID-19 and help avoid the need to shut down parts of the economy.

COVID-19 news nationally

Vaccine Hunters Canada, the volunteer-run organization set up to help Canadians find vaccination information, has wound down its operations.

The group, founded in March and with more than 425,000 followers on social media platforms Twitter, Discord, Facebook, Instagram and TikTok, tweeted its last on Tuesday, saying that with most Canadians now fully vaccinated and vaccines more widely available now than when they set up shop nearly six months ago, their services had become less crucial.


Article content

Since its formation, the group’s online self-serve Find Your Immunization tool was accessed by more than two million unique users.

Despite the group’s departure from social media, its website, vaccinehunters.ca, and its self-serve tools and resources, will remain active. Additionally, while its social media channels will be inactive, they will not be deleted.

“Although we hope there won’t be a need for these channels in the future,” a statement on the website notes, “we won’t be shutting them down altogether, just in case.”

-With files from Postmedia

  1. A recent file photo of the Ottawa-Carleton District School Board headquarters on Greenbank Road.

    Ottawa-Carleton District School Board trustees vote for mandatory COVID-19 staff vaccinations

  2. A test scan of a vaccine passport is shown at an Econofitness gym in Laval, Quebec, Canada August 17, 2021.

    Quebec’s vaccine passport starts Sept. 1, here’s what out-of-province visitors must show to gain access to non-essential businesses



    Postmedia is committed to maintaining a lively but civil forum for discussion and encourage all readers to share their views on our articles. Comments may take up to an hour for moderation before appearing on the site. We ask you to keep your comments relevant and respectful. We have enabled email notifications—you will now receive an email if you receive a reply to your comment, there is an update to a comment thread you follow or if a user you follow comments. Visit our Community Guidelines for more information and details on how to adjust your email settings.