Ontario’s new COVID-19 case count closes in on 10,000, as ICU numbers remain stable

Hospitalizations approached 2,000 during the third wave in April

Just 24-hours after Ontario set a record for daily COVID-19 cases, it was shattered on Christmas Eve as the province reported 9,571 new infections.

Despite the soaring figure, hospitalizations are at 508, up from 382, but still well below the last time Ontario was seeing record case counts. During the third wave in April, the number of patients hospitalized with the virus approached 2,000. Intensive care unit numbers remain stable at 164.

The province also reported six more deaths.

Ontario’s positivity rate hit a record for a second straight day at 18.7 per cent as 72,639 tests were processed in the past day.

The seven-day rolling average of new cases now stands at 4,923, up from 4,001 yesterday.

There are more than 40,000 known active cases of COVID-19 in the province.

On Friday, the Simcoe Muskoka District Health Unit reported 298 new infections, a single-day record, after records were set the previous two days.

There are 1,836 active cases and 103 more recoveries. The health unit says 25 people are hospitalized in the region with COVID-19. Of the new infections, 86 are in Barrie, with 48 of the cases involving people under the age of 35.

The next update from the health unit won’t be until Wednesday, Dec. 29.

Two weeks ago, Ontario’s COVID-19 Science Advisory Table projected case counts could reach 10,000 per day and ICU occupancy would top 600 by the end of the month if no further public health measures were implemented.

As of this past Sunday, new restrictions announced by the Ford government went into effect including capacity limits at most indoor settings such as bars, restaurants, shopping malls, grocery stores and gyms, and reduced social gathering limits.