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COVID-19: Latest developments in the Greater Toronto Area on April 7

Click to play video: 'Ontario issuing stay-at-home order, declares 3rd state of emergency amid spread of COVID-19 variants' Ontario issuing stay-at-home order, declares 3rd state of emergency amid spread of COVID-19 variants
WATCH ABOVE: Ontario Premier Doug Ford announced the province's third state of emergency on Wednesday and issued a four-week stay-at-home order provincewide effective Thursday at 12:01 a.m. All non-essential retail will be closed apart from delivery and curbside pickup, and big box retailers will only be allowed to sell essential items, Ford added. – Apr 7, 2021

Here are the latest developments on the COVID-19 pandemic in the Greater Toronto Area for Wednesday.

Schools in Toronto, Guelph move to online learning

Students at schools in Toronto are taking classes fully online today following an order from the city’s top doctor.

The public health unit says the measure is necessary as new COVID-19 variants pose a greater risk of hospitalization and death.

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Classes in Wellington-Dufferin-Guelph are also moving online after Peel Region took schools virtual yesterday.

Those health units say the measure will be reassessed depending on the COVID-19 situation at the end of the spring break next week.

Read more: Schools in Toronto, Guelph move to online learning

Ontario government expanding COVID-19 vaccines to educators in high-risk areas

The Ontario government has announced all education workers in high-risk neighbourhoods in Peel Region and Toronto will be eligible to get their COVID-19 vaccine beginning during the April break next week.

Education workers who support students with special needs across Ontario will also be eligible to be vaccinated.

Eligibility for education workers in other hot spots including Ottawa and York Region will be allowed once the vaccine supply increases.

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Read more: Ontario government expanding COVID-19 vaccines to educators in high-risk areas

Status of cases in the GTA

Ontario reported 3,215 new coronavirus cases on Wednesday.

Of those:

  • 1,095 were in Toronto
  • 596 were in Peel Region
  • 342 were in York Region
  • 187 were in Durham Region
  • 75 were in Halton Region

Ontario reports more than 3,200 COVID-19 cases, 17 deaths

Ontario is reporting 3,215 new COVID-19 cases on Wednesday, bringing the provincial total to 370,817.

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The death toll in the province has risen to 7,475 as 17 more deaths were recorded.

Resolved cases increased by 2,407 from the previous day. The government said 49,889 tests were processed in the last 24 hours.

Read more: Ontario reports more than 3,200 COVID-19 cases, 17 deaths

Ontario administers more than 100,000 vaccine doses in the last day

As of 8 p.m. on Tuesday, the provincial government reported administering 2,726,221 total COVID-19 vaccine doses.

That marks an increase of 104,382 vaccines in the last day, a single-day high as the province has never administered more than 100,000 vaccines in 24 hours. There are 324,148 people fully vaccinated with two doses.

“We’re getting needles into arms as quickly and safely as possible and we continue to ramp up capacity. Vaccines remain our best defense in the fight against COVID-19. Please sign up when it’s your turn,” Health Minister Christine Elliott tweeted Wednesday.

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Cases, deaths and outbreaks in Ontario long-term care homes

According to the Ministry of Long-Term Care, there have been 3,755 deaths reported among residents and patients in long-term care homes across Ontario which did not increase from yesterday. Eleven virus-related deaths in total have been reported among staff.

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There are 52 current outbreaks in homes, which is unchanged from the previous day.

The ministry also indicated there are currently 9 active cases among long-term care residents and 118 active cases among staff — up by one and down by three, respectively, in the last day.

Cases among students and staff at Ontario schools, child care centres

Meanwhile, government figures show there have been a total of 14,213 school-related COVID-19 cases in Ontario to date — 10,692 among students and 2,356 among staff (1,165 individuals were not identified).

This is an increase of 719 more cases in the last day following the Easter long-weekend — 571 student cases, 146 staff cases and two were not identified.

The COVID-19 cases are currently from 1,266 out of 4,828 schools in the province which is 26 per cent of schools. All schools in Toronto, Guelph and Peel Region are closed.

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There have been a total of 4,004 confirmed cases within child care centres and homes — an increase of 199 (113 new child cases and 86 staff cases). Out of 5,282 child care centres in Ontario, 408 currently have cases and 114 centres are closed.

Toronto’s SickKids Hospital to open ICU admissions for young adults with COVID-19

SickKids Hospital in Toronto says it is preparing to open up its ICU to adults aged about 40 and younger as Ontario grapples with the pressure that COVID-19 cases have put on the health care system.

SickKids, which is primarily a hospital for children, said it has the capacity to treat adults because ICU admissions there have remained low.

The hospital is opening up an eight-bed unit to handle adult cases if other hospitals run out of space, it said.

Read more: Toronto’s SickKids Hospital to open ICU admissions for young adults with COVID-19

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NOTE: This story will be updated throughout the day.

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