Ontario Reports 514 New COVID-19 Cases

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TORONTO — Ontario is reporting 514 new COVID-19 cases today, and 38 more deaths.

That brings the province to a total of 8,961 cases, including 423 deaths and nearly 4,200 cases that have been resolved.

The growth in total cases has been relatively low for about a week, and Ontario health officials have said the peak is expected this week.

The number of people in hospital with COVID-19 grew slightly to 807, and while the number of people on ventilators also grew, there are fewer people in intensive care.

The province completed 9,001 tests over the previous day, surpassing a target the health minister set last week after the premier expressed frustration that Ontario had been testing well below its capacity.

Ontario is also expanding its testing for COVID-19 priority groups, including for residents and staff of homeless shelters and group homes, people living with health-care workers and cancer patients.

A spokeswoman for Health Minister Christine Elliott said the new guidelines will help Ontario take full advantage of the testing capacity it has built, and will help the province more effectively identify and contain cases among vulnerable populations.

The new guidelines say people living and working in “congregate” settings such as homeless shelters, correctional facilities and group homes should be tested as soon as possible if they have symptoms such as fever, pneumonia or “any new or worsening symptom.”

Essential workers, cross-border workers, and people living with health-care workers, care providers and first responders are also now to be tested as soon as possible if they develop symptoms.

The guidelines also say people who need to be in frequent contact with the health system, including cancer patients, people undergoing dialysis and pregnant women should be tested as soon as they develop symptoms.