Published Monday, November 16, 2020 10:21AM EST
Last Updated Monday, November 16, 2020 11:53AM EST
The number represents an increase on the 1,248 new infections reported yesterday as well as the 1,242 infections reported last Monday (Nov. 9).
As a result the seven-day rolling average now stands at 1,443, up from 1,105 just one week prior.
It is a significant drop off from the recent high of 29 deaths that was reported on Sunday and actually represents the lowest number of fatalities reported in any single 24-hour period since Nov. 1.
The death toll, however, continues to rise and there have now been 3,371 people to die with COVID-19 since March.
The latest cases come as the province conducted 33,351 tests on Sunday, repeating a pattern that typically sees it conduct far fewer tests on Sundays than any other day of the week.
The Ministry of Health says that the positivity rate was 4.1 per cent.
About 60 per cent of the new cases were concentrated in just two public heath units – Toronto (508 new cases) and Peel (392 new cases).
York Region had another 170 cases while Halton had 46, Durham had 45 and Hamilton had 35.
Waterloo also reported 67 cases, giving that region the most cases of any public health unit outside of the GTA.
Speaking with CP24 earlier on Monday, Toronto Mayor John Tory said that it might be a matter of “days” until new restrictions are introduced to curb the spread of the virus within his city.
Toronto, it should be noted, now has a weekly incidence rate that is more than two-and-a-half times higher than the level that the province uses when considering whether to designate regions as red zones (40 new cases per 100,000 people). In Peel it is nearly four-and-a-half times that mark (174.5).
“Premier Ford has said nothing has been taken off the table, I think that was the right thing to say and I think that we are kind of taking him up on that and suggesting some things that we believe should be done,” Tory said. “There is no question in my mind that there are some extra things that should be done to stop the spread of this virus.”
Jump in cases comes amid positive vaccine news
The jump in cases on Monday comes amid the backdrop of more positive news with Moderna reporting that their vaccine appears to be 94.5 per cent effective based on preliminary data.
It is however unlikely that any vaccine will be available in Canada until early 2021 and there is starting to be a real cause for concern about hospital capacity as cases surge.
There are now 500 patients hospitalized with COVID-19 but the Ministry of Health says that dozens of hospitals failed to upload information to the provincial database over the weekend, meaning that the number is likely higher.
There are also 125 COVID patients in the ICU. Officials have previously said that once that number surpasses 150 some hospitals in hard-hit areas will likely have to suspend elective surgeries and procedures yet again.
“If you look at where we are at right now and look at how long we are from when a (vaccination) program might roll in February or March, who knows. That is still months and moths away. So we are still clearly headed along a rather dangerous course in many parts of Canada with rising numbers, rising hospitalizations, ICU stays and deaths,” infectious diseases expert Dr. Issac Bogoch told CP24 on Monday morning. “We have to be very, very careful and while there is certainly a light at the end of the tunnel we still have to be extremely careful with our own actions and of course our governments and public health units need to have sound policies to keep the public safe until these programs roll out and large portions of the population can be immunized.”