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344 new coronavirus cases, 15 deaths in Ontario as total cases rise to 29,747

Premier Doug Ford provides an update on Ontario's response to COVID-19

Ontario reported 344 new cases of the novel coronavirus on Friday, bringing the provincial total to 29,747.

The death toll has risen to 2,372, as 15 more deaths were reported.

Meanwhile, 23,583 people have recovered from COVID-19, the disease caused by the virus, which is 79 per cent of cases.

Ontario has completed 809,053 tests so far for the virus. This is up 22,730 tests from the previous day, which hits the daily testing capacity of more than 20,000 tests a day, according to the province.

READ MORE: Coronavirus — Ontario to allow short-term rentals again beginning Friday

Premier Doug Ford has urged Ontarians to “go get tested” after expanding the criteria to include a wide range of people, with or without symptoms. Mobile testing units have also been deployed across the Greater Toronto Area, where reported COVID-19 case numbers are higher.

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Friday’s report marks an increase of 1.2 per cent in total cumulative cases. That figure has mostly hovered between 1.2 and 1.6 per cent over the past week.

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Ontario has 749 patients (down by 27 from the previous day) hospitalized due to COVID-19, with 118 patients in an intensive care unit (down by three) and 94 patients in ICUs on a ventilator (no change).

Greater Toronto Area public health units account for 66 per cent of all cases in the province.

Here is a breakdown of Ontario cases by gender and age:

  • 13,197 people are male (44.4 per cent).
  • 16,302 people are female (54.8 per cent).
  • 1,123 people are 19 and under (3.8 per cent).
  • 7,987 people are 20 to 39 (26.8 per cent).
  • 9,151 people are 40 to 59 (30.8 per cent).
  • 5,907 people are 60 to 79 (19.9 per cent).
  • 5,563 people are 80 and over (18.7 per cent).
  • 248 cases did not specify male or female, and 16 cases had an unknown age.

There are 12,247 people currently under investigation awaiting test results.

Coronavirus outbreak: Ontario long-term care operator executive allegedly recorded making inappropriate comments
Coronavirus outbreak: Ontario long-term care operator executive allegedly recorded making inappropriate comments

According to the Ministry of Long-Term Care, there have been 1,692 deaths reported among residents and patients in long-term care homes across Ontario, which is an increase of 13 deaths, and there are 85 current outbreaks. Seven health-care workers in long-term care homes have died.

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Ontario officials have said there may be a discrepancy between overall deaths and deaths at long-term care homes due to how the province’s health database system, called iPHIS, is tracking data and how the Ministry of Long-Term Care is tracking data.The ministry also indicated there are currently 969 confirmed cases among long-term care residents and 732 cases among staff.Health-care workers in Ontario account for 4,890 of the total reported cases, which is 16.4 per cent of the infected population.The newly reported numbers are valid as of 2 p.m. Thursday and Ottawa public health units and 4 p.m. for the rest of the province.