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COVID-19: Latest developments in the Greater Toronto Area on May 3

Click to play video: 'COVID-19: Managing hospital capacity remains key battle ground with nearly 900 in Ontario ICUs' COVID-19: Managing hospital capacity remains key battle ground with nearly 900 in Ontario ICUs
WATCH ABOVE: COVID-19: Managing hospital capacity remains key battle ground with nearly 900 in Ontario ICUs. Katherine Ward reports – May 2, 2021

Here are the latest developments on the COVID-19 pandemic in the Greater Toronto Area for Monday:

COVID-19 vaccine bookings open to Ontario hot spot residents 18 and older

Ontario is making good on its promise to expand COVID-19 vaccine eligibility, opening its provincial booking portal to hot-spot residents aged 18 and older.

Adults living in the 114 specific postal codes designated as hot spots were able to start reserving appointments as of Monday morning, though some on social media reported long wait times or technical difficulties with the provincial booking website.

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Minutes after bookings opened at 8 a.m., the site showed an estimated wait of more than an hour, with tens of thousands of users in the queue.

Read more: Thousands of Ontarians book COVID-19 vaccine appointments within hours of expanded eligibility

Ontario may shorten interval between vaccine doses as more supply expected

Ontario might shorten the length of time between COVID-19 vaccine doses as it prepares to receive more supply this month.

The province expects to receive weekly Pfizer vaccine shipments of more than 785,000 doses in May, and more than 938,000 doses next month.

Read more: Ontario may shorten COVID-19 vaccine interval, looking into mixing 1st and 2nd doses

Status of cases in the GTA

Ontario reported 3,436 new COVID-19 cases on Monday.

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Of those:

  • 985 were in Toronto
  • 714 were in Peel Region
  • 351 were in York Region
  • 271 were in Durham Region
  • 159 were in Halton Region

Ontario reports more than 3,400 new COVID-19 cases, 16 deaths

Ontario is reporting 3,436 new COVID-19 cases on Monday. The provincial total now stands at 473,901.

The death toll in the province has risen to 8,118 as 16 more deaths were recorded.

Resolved cases increased by 3,623 from the previous day. The government said 33,179 tests were processed in the last 24 hours.

As of 8 p.m. on Sunday, a total of 5,378,249 COVID-19 vaccine doses have been administered. That marks an increase of 53,880 vaccines in the last day. There are 375,905 people fully vaccinated with two doses.

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Read more: Ontario reports more than 3,400 new COVID-19 cases, 16 deaths

Variants of concern in Ontario

Officials have listed breakdown data for the new VOCs (variants of concern) detected so far in the province which consist of the B.1.1.7 (first detected in the United Kingdom), B.1.351 (first detected in South Africa), and P.1 (first detected in Brazil).

The B.1.1.7 VOC is currently the dominating strain at 75,346 variant cases, which is up by 3,033 since the previous day. There have also been 301 confirmed B.1.351 variant cases, which is up by 10, and 920 P.1 variant cases, which is up by 45.

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

According to the Ministry of Long-Term Care, there have been 3,760 deaths reported among residents and patients in long-term care homes across Ontario, which increased by two. Eleven virus-related deaths in total have been reported among staff.

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There are 50 current outbreaks in homes, which is up by two from the previous day.

The ministry also indicated there are currently 56 active cases among long-term care residents and 170 active cases among staff — up by two and up by seven, respectively, in the last day.

— With files from The Canadian Press

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