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

The latest coronavirus updates from across the province
By TVO.org staff - Published on Sep 29, 2021

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Provincewide

  • Per today's government report, there are 495 new cases in Ontario, for a total of 585,502 since the pandemic began; 292 people are in hospital testing positive for COVID-19, while 172 are in intensive care who either previously tested positive or have currently tested positive, and 123 patients are on ventilators. To date, 9,723 people have died.
  • According to data from the Ministry of Long-Term Care, there are 17 outbreaks in long-term-care facilities, 54 confirmed active cases of positive residents, and 39 confirmed active cases of positive staff. To date, there have been 3,817 confirmed resident deaths and 13 confirmed staff deaths.
  • Per the government's report on the province's vaccination program, as of 8 p.m. yesterday, Ontario has administered 38,297 new doses of COVID-19 vaccines, for a total of 21,742,456 since December 2020. 708,250 people have received only one dose, and 10,517,103 people have received both doses. 86.09 per cent of Ontarians over the age of 12 have received their first dose of vaccine and 80.66 per cent have received their second.
  • As of 2 p.m. yesterday, Ontario's publicly-funded schools were reporting 159 new school-related student cases (for a total of 1,768) 11 new staff cases (for a total of 222) and new unspecified cases for a total of 52; 808 schools are reporting at least one case and 1 schools have been closed.

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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.

​​​​​​​Greater Toronto and Hamilton Area

  • According to September 28 data, Toronto reported 115 new cases of COVID-19, for a total of 178,398 since the pandemic began; 61 of them are in hospital (11 new). In total, 3,654 people have died (4 new).

  • On Monday, Mayor John Tory announced that the City of Toronto and Team Toronto vaccination partners have now administered two doses of COVID-19 vaccine to more than 80 per cent of eligible Torontonians age 12 and older.

  •  Toronto Public Health (TPH) announced Monday that it is getting ready to vaccinate children ages five and up, reports CTV News. The agency has formed a “COVID-19 Vaccination Planning Group,” which includes health partners, school boards, community representatives and The Ministry of Health, in order to get ready for the rollout.

  • The Toronto Transit Commission has filed an urgent application with the Ontario Labour Relations Board accusing the union representing Toronto transit workers of carrying out illegal strike action by encouraging workers to refuse to disclose their COVID-19 vaccination status, reports CP24

  • Peel Public Health is ready to deploy a vaccine strategy for kids aged 5 to 11 once a vaccine is approved by Health Canada and provincial guidance is provided, reports the Brampton Guardian. Peel Region’s medical officer of health Lawrence Loh confirmed the vaccine will be deployed when ready and that, “we will continue to keep residents informed on plans as timelines on these matters become clearer.”

  • As the Hamilton Spectator reports, public health has declared COVID-19 outbreaks at four schools, two announced Monday and two on Tuesday. In total, there are 11 ongoing outbreaks in Hamilton schools, the largest affecting eight students and two staff. New COVID-19 cases in the city are being reported at a higher rate in kids and teens than any other age group, a pandemic first. Public health is planning a rollout of vaccines for over 42,000 children age five to 11 since it's anticipated at least one brand of shot will be approved for them soon.

    In Niagara, COVID-19 spread essentially stalled in September, buying time for more people to get vaccinated, acting medical officer of health Mustafa Hirji says. As the St. Catharines Standard reports, Hirji notes he's worried about growing cases in nearby areas such as Hamilton, and cold weather driving an increase in indoor activity where the virus spreads more easily. Hriji recommends against inviting unvaccinated people to family events such as Thanksgiving.

Indigenous

  • As of September 21, Indigenous Services Canada is aware of 687 communities across Canada with vaccinations underway. 769,750 doses have been administered, of that 341,234 were second doses in individuals 12 and older.
  • As of September 27, Indigenous Services Canada is aware of 1,805 active cases of COVID-19 in First Nation communities across Canada. It is also reporting 418 COVID-19 related deaths in total, across all First Nation reserves in Canada. To date, Ontario First Nation communities have had a total of 3,231 COVID-19 cases.

Eastern

  • On Tuesday, the Leeds, Grenville and Lanark District Health Unit announced that it is celebrating a significant milestone with 90 per cent of residents ages 12+ having received 2 doses of COVID-19 vaccine. According to the press release published by the health unit, the Leeds, Grenville and Lanark District Health Unit is the first health unit in Ontario to reach 90 per cent of their population with two doses of COVID-19 vaccine. 
  • More than 40 per cent of the Kingston Health Sciences Centre staff placed on unpaid leave are to soon return to work, reports the Kingston Whig-Standard. The hospital confirmed Tuesday that 57 of the 136 staff placed on leave last week have since provided proof of COVID-19 vaccination or a valid exemption and can return to work after providing a negative test result.

  • The Kawartha Pine Ridge District School Board reported a case at Peterborough's Kenner Collegiate on Tuesday, reports the Peterborough Examiner. It’s a student case, according to Public Health Ontario. The school remains open and the student will self-isolate at home until cleared by Peterborough Public Health.

Northern

  • Health units in northeastern Ontario have reported an uptick in vaccinations since the province announced its new vaccine passport requirements for certain businesses, like restaurants and gyms, reports CBC Sudbury. Jim Chirico, medical officer of health with the North Bay Parry Sound District Health Unit, said there was a 20 per cent increase in vaccine uptake between September 1 and September 22 in the district.

  • Officials from the Timiskaming Health Unit have announced that all eligible residents of the district’s long-term-care homes have now received their third dose of COVID-19 vaccine as per provincial direction, reports the Sudbury Star

  • The Thunder Bay district has the second-highest vaccination rate in Ontario, TBNewswatch reports. According to data from the Ministry of Health, Thunder Bay - where 91 per cent of people 12 and up have had at least one COVID-19 vaccine - is only second to Leeds, Grenville and Lanark, where 95 per cent of people 12 and over have received at least one COVID-19 vaccine. 

  • The Northwestern Health Unit currently has 5 active COVID-19 cases, including three in the Rainy River district. The health unit is warning of an increased risk of COVID-19 in the Emo area, which falls in the Rainy River district, TBNewswatch reports. The Northwestern Health Unit’s medical officer of health is warning residents to avoid large indoor gatherings and to get vaccinated against the virus.

​​​​​​​Southwestern

  • London police unveiled a COVID vaccination policy Tuesday that provides for penalties – including possible dismissal – for any of the service’s 900 employees who don’t get their shots, reports the London Free Press
  • Point Edward has approved a COVID-19 vaccination policy for its five-member council, reports Blackburn NewsVillage council members and political appointees are being asked to provide proof of vaccination by Friday, October 1, 2021, to attend in-person meetings or enter municipal facilities.
  • A Thames Valley District School Board (TVDSB) meeting was disrupted by anti-vaccination protestors on Tuesday night, reports Blackburn News

  •  Restaurant owners are calling for the Windsor-Essex County Health Unit unit to  “#CanceltheCurfew” and roll back restrictions from a September 7, 2021 letter of instruction that requires restaurants, bars and adult entertainment to close by midnight and prohibit indoor dancing, reports the Windsor Star


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