Ontario reports 550 new COVID-19 cases, largest single-day increase so far


TORONTO — Ontario reported 550 new COVID-19 cases Wednesday, the biggest single-day increase so far, though figures also showed a return to an increasing testing backlog.

The new cases bring the total in the province to 5,276 cases — an increase of 11.6 per cent over Tuesday — including 174 deaths and 2,074 resolved.

The jump followed two days of a relatively lower number of new cases.

About 3,200 tests were reported as completed in the past 24 hours. The government says Ontario’s capacity is actually at 13,000 tests per day now, but only about 3,500 are being submitted through assessment centres.

Despite that gap in available testing capacity, a backlog of pending tests that had nearly been cleared has now grown for two days in a row, and is up to more than 1,100.

The number of people in hospital dropped since Tuesday, from 614 to 605, but more people are now in intensive care and on ventilators.

There are now at least 58 long-term care homes with one or more cases of COVID-19. About 45 per cent of all of the COVID-19 deaths in Ontario have been in long-term care residents.

As well, 580 of Ontario’s confirmed COVID-19 cases have been in health-care workers.