COVID-19: What you need to know for March 29

The latest coronavirus updates from across the province
By staff - Published on Mar 29, 2021



This article was last updated on Monday at 3:49 p.m.


  • Per today's government report, there are 2,094 new cases in Ontario, for a total of total of 345,234 since the pandemic began; 841 people are in hospital, 382 of them in intensive care, and 236 on ventilators. To date, 7,337 people have died.
  • According to data from the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care, there are 54 outbreaks in long-term-care facilities, 9 confirmed active cases of positive residents, and 119 confirmed active cases of positive staff. To date, there have been 3,753 confirmed resident deaths and 11 confirmed staff deaths.
  • As of March 29, in publicly funded schools in Ontario, there are 170 new school-related student cases (for a total of 9,053) 45 new staff cases (for a total of 2,021) and new unspecified cases for a total of 1,163; 1116 schools are reporting at least one case and 48 schools have been closed.
  • Per the government's report on Ontario’s vaccination program, as of 8 p.m. yesterday, Ontario has administered 50,453 new doses of COVID-19 vaccines, for a total of 2,031,735 since December 2020. 1,409,240 people have received only one dose, and 311,248 people have received both doses.

Are you appreciating this article?

Donate today to support TVO's quality journalism. As a registered charity, TVO depends on people like you to support original, in-depth reporting that matters.

Data from the Province of Ontario; visualizations by John Michael McGrath.
Data from the Province of Ontario; visualizations by John Michael McGrath.
Data from the Province of Ontario; visualizations by John Michael McGrath.
  • The Ontario government announced that it is extending booking for COVID-19 vaccination appointments to individuals aged 70 and over through its online booking system and call centre in 11 additional public health units on March 29, 2021, following its expansion in Toronto that began on March 27, 2021. As of 8:00 a.m. on Monday, all individuals aged 70 and over in 11 public health units will be eligible to book a COVID-19 vaccination appointment at a mass immunization clinic through the provincial online booking system and call centre. The full list of public health units can be found here.
  • On Friday, the Ontario government announced that it will adjust public health measures primarily for certain activities held in regions currently in the Grey-Lockdown level of the COVID-19 Response Framework: Keeping Ontario Safe and Open. For Outdoor Fitness Classes, Outdoor Team Training, and Outdoor Personal Training, some requirements include no  patrons are permitted to be in the indoor areas of the facility and the maximum number of patrons is 10 people. For personal care services, no member of the public may be permitted to enter the premises except by appointment and appointments must only be made by individuals or with members of the same household. The full list of requirements can be found here.
  • On Friday, based on the advice of the Chief Medical Officer of Health, the Ontario government announced that it is moving two public health regions to new levels in the COVID-19 Response Framework: Keeping Ontario Safe and Open. The City of Hamilton public health region has been moved to the Grey-Lockdown level and the Eastern Ontario Health Unit has been moved to the Red-Control level.

Greater Toronto and Hamilton Area 

  • According to data as of March 28, there are 670 new cases in Toronto, for a total of 111,270 since the pandemic began; 302 of them are in hospital (16 new). In total, 2,788 people have died (two new).
  • Today, the City of Toronto will open two more City-operated COVID-19 immunization clinics at Malvern Community Recreation Centre (Malvern) in Scarborough and Mitchell Field Arena (Willowdale) in North York to vaccinate eligible residents age 70 years or older who have confirmed vaccination appointments. According to a statement released by the City of Toronto, the clinic will operate seven days per week from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. Teams of up to 15 immunizers at a time will work to vaccinate five people per hour per immunizer. The clinic is opening with capacity to vaccinate 675 people per day and the capacity can be expanded as vaccine supply increases.
  • According to the City of Toronto's most recent COVID-19 vaccination update, to date, 481,020 COVID-19 vaccine doses have been administered in Toronto. Starting today, the City is vaccinating residents born in 1951 and earlier at five of the City-operated mass immunization clinics: Metro Toronto Convention Centre, Toronto Congress Centre, Scarborough Town Centre, Malvern Community Recreation Centre and Mitchell Field Arena. On April 5, a City-operated clinic at The Hangar will open.
  • Two North York elementary schools and a Scarborough Catholic school will be closed on Monday due to COVID-19 cases, reports CP24.

  • Toronto doctors are warning that rising COVID-19 cases in Ontario are putting hospitals in a precarious situation, and that the number of patients in intensive care may soon eclipse the pandemic high seen in January, reports the Toronto Star. Scarborough Health Network has arranged transfers for 10 of its ICU patients to hospitals as far away as Kingston and Peterborough over the past week, said Martin Betts, medical director and chief of the critical care program.

  • As of this morning, Hamilton is in the "grey" level of Ontario's COVID-19 prevention framework (commonly called lockdown). This comes as cases in Hamilton have continued to rise, despite vaccination efforts, and contagious variants of the coronavirus spread more and more within the city. There are fewer restrictions present now than during Hamilton's last period in the grey level. The Hamilton Spectator listed what is and is not allowed.

  • As CBC Hamilton reports, the medical director at the Hamilton Health Sciences hospital network says data shows vaccination efforts have saved lives, with far fewer deaths now than in December, despite Hamilton experiencing a similar number of cases. He suggests hospital outbreaks will determine public health policy as the pandemic goes on.

  • A Hamilton Mountain church held a large in-person gathering before health officials declared a COVID-19 outbreak at the parish. As the Spectator reports, the church's pastor says it was worth the risk. Ten parishioners tested positive for the virus as public health investigates complaints that the church held an indoor service with people not wearing masks. A screenshot, alleged to be of a stream from a recent service, shows a crowd not using PPE or spacing out.

  • The Haldimand-Norfolk Health Unit plans to vaccinate migrant farm workers starting in April, the Spectator reports. Federal and provincial officials say they have discussed taking that on but nothing has been confirmed, despite calls from Haldimand Norfolk's medical officer of health for the federal government to manage those vaccinations. Migrant farm workers live in congregate settings and cannot work from home.

  • Starting today, Niagara residents born 1951 or earlier can book COVID-19 vaccines. The St. Catharines Standard has more details on booking.

  • Niagara's acting medical officer of health, Mustafa Hirji, says he's worried about super spreading events if people gather in large groups for Easter. Hirji told the Standard he worries relaxed restrictions signal to people they don't have to be careful, when in fact, the opposite is true given how quickly cases are growing. Hirji also says he worries people in Hamilton may go to Niagara to access things they can't in Hamilton.


  • As of March 25, Indigenous Services Canada is aware of 1,028 active cases of COVID-19 in First Nation communities across Canada. They are also reporting 279 COVID-19 related deaths in total, across all First Nation reserves in Canada. To date, Ontario First Nation communities have had a total of 1,572 COVID-19 cases.
  • As of March 25, Indigenous Services Canada is aware of 610 communities across Canada with vaccinations underway. 235,175 doses have been administered. ISC reminds the urban Indigenous population that First Nations living off reserve, Inuit and Métis are or will receive COVID-19 vaccination through their provincial or territorial health services. ISC is aware of vaccinations already taking place in several urban centres, including Toronto, Montreal, Winnipeg, Ottawa, Whitehorse.
  • A pop-up clinic offered the COVID-19 vaccine to Indigenous people Friday at the North Simcoe Sports and Recreation Centre in Midland, reports CTV News. The Simcoe Muskoka health unit is working with local Indigenous services to provide the vaccine to First Nations, Inuit and Métis individuals in the region.


  • The outbreak at Sudbury's Salvation Army Cedar Place shelter and the YMCA Warming Centre has been expanded to the Samaritan Centre Resource Program on Elgin Street and the Homelessness Network Day Centre. The initial outbreak was declared March 16. A high risk exposure warning has also been announced at Samaritan Centre, the Homeless Network Day Centre and the YMCA between March 24 and 27. Anyone who attended these facilities at that time should self-monitor and get tested, according to Public Health Sudbury and Districts.
  • The North Bay Parry Sound Health Unit has limited vaccine appointments for adults aged 75 and older are available for bookings this week. In North Bay, the appointments are available March 29 to 31 and April 2 at Memorial Gardens, and at the Britt Legion and SSJ arena in Sundridge on April 1. Appointments can be booked online or by calling l 1-800-563-2808 and choosing option 5.
  • Hundreds of healthcare workers and longterm care staff have refused COVID vaccines in northern Ontario, according to CBC Sudbury. At the Finlandia longterm care home in Sudbury, 20 per cent of workers refused the vaccine, and 3,100 or 4,600 Health Science North employees have taken the vaccine, with 140 workers expressly refusing the vaccine.
  • The Thunder Bay District Health Unit reported one death and 50 new cases of COVID-19 over the weekend. COVID-19 hospitalizations dropped to 19 on Sunday, with four people in ICU, a positive sign which may allow the Thunder Bay Regional Health Sciences Centre to resume elective surgeries soon, TBNewswatch reports.
  • The Northwestern Health Unit reported 19 new COVID-19 cases in its catchment over the weekend.


  • Residents aged 70 years and older in Ottawa as well as the districts Kingston, Frontenac and Lennox & Addington Public Health and the Leeds, Grenville and Lanark District Health Unit are now eligible to book vaccination appointments, CBC News reports.
  • The Kingston region saw 17 new COVID-19 cases on Saturday, though the region's medical officer of health Kieran Moore says that the case count is trending downward, CTV News reports.
  • Municipalities in MPP Randy Hillier’s Lanark-Frontenac-Kingston riding are passing motions denouncing his spreading of false information about COVID-19, Global News reports.
  • The Eastern Ontario Health Unit moved into the red zone Monday, CTV News reports. “We’re pleading with everybody; please, please, please be very careful. The variant now has taken over in our area,” said EOHU’s medical officer of health Paul Roumeliotis. “It’s over 50 per cent of the cases as well and it's happening like that provincially. It’s much easier to transmit.”


  • Free rides organized to and from COVID-19 vaccination clinics in the city of Waterloo are not wheelchair accessible, CBC Kitchener-Waterloo reports.
  • As the pandemic wears on, bicycles remain in high demand in the Waterloo region, CTV Kitchener reports.
  • As cases of COVID-19 spike in the London region, the are could soon see its provincial pandemic control zone status switch to red from orange, CTV London reports.
  • In the London area, only 31 of 77 charges under provincial orders about COVID-19 restrictions in 2020 have been dealt with, CBC London reports.
  • Ontario's minister of the environment, conservation and parks, a pharmacist, is doing double duty on weekends delivering COVID-19 vaccine shots in his St. Thomas and area riding, CTV London reports.
  • Two more residences at Western University have reported outbreaks of COVID-19, CBC London reports.
  • Wastewater from a University of Windsor residence has tested positive for COVID-19, CTV Windsor reports.

For more information:

Ontario Hubs are made possible by the Barry and Laurie Green Family Charitable Trust & Goldie Feldman

Thinking of your experience with, how likely are you to recommend to a friend or colleague?
Not at all Likely
Extremely Likely

Most recent in Coronavirus