COVID-19: What you need to know for July 15

The latest coronavirus updates from across the province
By TVO.org staff - Published on Jul 15, 2021

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Provincewide

  • Per today's government report, there are 143 new cases in Ontario, for a total of 547,705 since the pandemic began; 165 people are in hospital testing positive for COVID-19, while 168 are in intensive care who either previously tested positive or have currently tested positive, and 114 patients are on ventilators. To date, 9,275 people have died.
  • According to data from the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care, there are 4 outbreaks in long-term-care facilities, 11 confirmed active cases of positive residents, and 7 confirmed active cases of positive staff. To date, there have been 3,788 confirmed resident deaths and 13 confirmed staff deaths.
  • Per the government's report on Ontario’s vaccination program, as of 8 p.m. yesterday, Ontario has administered 166,201 new doses of COVID-19 vaccines, for a total of 17,641,856 since December 2140. 2,782,004 people have received only one dose, and 7,429,926 people have received both doses. 78.31 per cent of Ontarians over the age of 12 have received their first dose of vaccine and 56.98 per cent have received their second.
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JMM COVID Graph
Data from the Province of Ontario; visualizations by John Michael McGrath.
JMM COVID Graph
Data from the Province of Ontario; visualizations by John Michael McGrath.
JMM COVID Graph
Data from the Province of Ontario; visualizations by John Michael McGrath.
JMM COVID Graph
Data from the Province of Ontario; visualizations by John Michael McGrath.
  • Ontario government officials are considering the pros and cons of requiring COVID-19 vaccinations for health-care workplaces, reports CBC News. A draft provincial document obtained by CBC News reveals the government is wading through the legal and ethical issues involved in developing vaccination policies for certain employment sectors. 

Greater Toronto and Hamilton Area 

  • According to July 14 data, there are 30 new cases in Toronto, for a total of 170,228 since the pandemic began; 65 of them are in hospital (five). In total, 3,585 people have died (four new). 
  • This morning, Mayor John Tory announced that Team Toronto has administered more than 4 million COVID-19 vaccine doses. According to a news release, 4,000,258 COVID-19 vaccine doses have been administered in Toronto to date. 

  • When asked about comments made by Soumya Swaminathan, WHO's chief scientist, about mixing vaccines, Lawrence Loh, Peel region's chief medical officer of health told the Brampton Guardian that he watched the video of the committee meeting of the World Health Organization and the comments were taken out of context. “They were discussing boosters,” he said, explaining that she was asked about people adding a third dose of the COVID-19 vaccine on their own volition. “For us, at Peel Public Health, (we) continue to follow the guidance of the federal and provincial government, and we, of course, recognize that there is decades of vaccinology that shows that different vaccines can have similar impacts on the immune system,” said Loh. 

  • St. Catharines is getting ready to re-open many attractions this week — some for the first time since COVID-19 closures were enacted to help limit the spread of the virus in March 2020, reports the St. Catharines Standard

Indigenous

  • As of July 13, Indigenous Services Canada is aware of 687 communities across Canada with vaccinations underway. 659,343 doses have been administered, of that 271,916 were second doses in individuals 12 and older.
  • As of July 13, Indigenous Services Canada is aware of 334 active cases of COVID-19 in First Nation communities across Canada. It is also reporting 371 COVID-19 related deaths in total, across all First Nation reserves in Canada. To date, Ontario First Nation communities have had a total of 2,869 COVID-19 cases.

Northern

  • The North Bay Parry Sound District Health Unit says La Niche des lionceaux child care centre in West Nipissing has a positive COVID case. The person who tested positive attended the centre on July 12. The entire centre has voluntarily dismissed all who attend and the health unit is following up with all close contacts. An outbreak has not yet been declared.
  • The North Bay Parry Sound District Health Unit says vaccine appointments booked on or after August 3 have been cancelled due to earlier second dose eligibilities from the province. Anyone can book an appointment between now and August 2 or attend a walk-in clinic.
  • The Porcupine Health Unit says it has four new cases from the James Bay region and 22 active cases within its area. The Weeneebayko Area Health Authority says it has 11 cases in Kashechewan and seven in Attawapiskat.

Eastern

  • As a part of Step 3 of Ontario’s re-opening, Ottawa’s recreational facilities will be opening beginning on Friday, and the city has confirmed that proof of vaccination will not be required to use them, Global News reports.
  • With vaccination rates rising, some people in Ontario are calling for hospitals to loosen their visitor rules, including Ottawan Blythe McKay, who recently spent 12 days alone in the hospital, CTV News reports. The Ottawa Hospital is slowly letting visitors return, but restrictions remain. (60 per cent of all adults in Ottawa are now fully vaccinated, Global News reports.)
  • The Eastern Ontario Health Unit’s top doctor,  Paul Roumeliotis, confirmed that the unit is planning more walk-in-style vaccination clinics in rural parts of the region, where transportation can be a factor, The Morrisburg Leader reports.
  • The University of Ottawa has confirmed that it will require any students living in residence to have at least one vaccination before moving in, SaltWire reports. Carleton University is not mandating such a policy, but other schools are, including Trent University in Peterborough.

Southwestern

  • Sarnia area casinos will reopen on Friday as part of step 3 of Ontario's reopening plan, reports Blackburn News. Rob Mitchell, Gateway Casinos Director of Communications, said Starlight Casino Point Edward will be able to welcome in around 1,000 patrons when its doors open at 10 a.m. The slots at Hiawatha Horse Park open at 9 a.m. with a maximum occupancy of around 300 people.
  • Cathy Burghardt-Jesson, Middlesex County's warden, has highlighted the need to find ways to connect with rural residents in smaller communities, for many of which reaching a mass vaccination centre remains a big hurdle, reports the Chatham Daily News. When discussing the number of people who still haven't received their first dose, Burghardt-Jesson said, “it’s not necessarily vaccine hesitancy … it’s because of the ease of getting it. If we can bring the vaccine to people, you know, then there will be no excuse.”
  • The Windsor Star reports that the city is embarking on a “measured and gradual” reopening of many of its indoor venues that have been shuttered for 16 months. “Just because the Province of Ontario is moving to Step 3 on Friday, it doesn’t mean that all of our facilities will be ready this coming weekend, and we also won’t be stopping the important community partnerships that we have put in place,” said Mayor Drew Dilkens.


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