Ontario reports 1,848 new COVID-19 cases

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The health unit said there are 54 active cases, with three people now being treated in Brantford General Hospital. Those numbers appeared to dip when the province first introduced lockdown measures at the end of November, but days later, they hiked back up. One more resident of that region has died of COVID-19.

The modelling also suggests that new restrictions are not working as well as they did at the beginning of the pandemic.

Middlesex-London, Simcoe Muskoka, and Wellington-Dufferin-Guelph will move into the red "control" zone.

Toronto and Peel Region have been in lockdown since November 23.

In a statement provided to NEWSTALK1010, the retail company says public health data does not support that retail shopping is contributing to the spread of COVID-19.

Algoma Public Health is reporting a new case of COVID-19 in the Algoma district.

Other areas with significant numbers include Toronto with 496 new cases today and York Region with 208.

Markham Mayor Frank Scarpitti said Friday that he respected the provincial decision but that he would be advocating for help directed at small businesses that will be forced to close. One or below is right where public health officials want it.

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"This move by the province of Ontario does not let us off the hook", he said.

The new restrictions were announced ahead of an update expected from the province on its vaccine distribution plans.

The province has said that it will begin immunizations with its first shipment of 6,000 doses on Tuesday.

According to the data, Ontario has seen a 91.6 per cent increase in hospitalizations over the past four weeks, as well as a 165.9 per cent increase in COVID-19 patients in the ICU.

The modelling also showed that the number of new COVID-19 cases in long-term care settings are flattening.

In the worst-case scenario, based on the five per cent growth rate that Ontario briefly saw in November before the lockdown in Toronto and Peel, the province could see almost 10,000 daily cases by early January.

Chief Medical Officer of Health Dr. David Williams urged people to heed calls to stay home in order to curb rising infections.

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