Toronto and Peel Region will be allowed to move into the next phase of Ontario’s reopening plan on Wednesday, Premier Doug Ford said Monday.
The two public health units, along with Windsor-Essex, were previously prevented from proceeding ahead as they dealt with comparatively more new daily cases than the 31 other health units around Ontario.
The move will allow residents in Toronto and Peel to dine-out on patios, get a haircut and shop in indoor malls, among other changes.
The news comes as Ontario continues to see new daily cases counts below 200, a steady decline in hospitalizations and consistent testing levels above 20,000 per day.
Toronto, Peel and Windsor-Essex still accounted for about 70 of the 161 new cases reported provincewide today, but the overall numbers of active cases in both Toronto and Peel have been in decline in recent weeks.
Speaking at his daily COVID-19 briefing, Ford said the novel coronavirus remains too much of a threat in Windsor-Essex to allow the region to reopen this week.
Meanwhile. 29 of the province’s 34 public health units confirming five or fewer infections of the novel coronavirus yesterday.
Eighteen public health units reported no new cases at all, according to the Ministry of Health.
Slightly more 86 per cent of Ontario’s 33,637 total cases are now marked resolved.
There are now 2,095 active cases in the province, a decrease of 56 from the last update and down considerably from the 5,600 or so that were active at the peak of the outbreak.
Further, Ontario’s network of about 30 community, commercial and hospital labs processed 21,900 test samples yesterday, while another 10,027 were added the queue.
The number of patients in hospitals with confirmed infections of the virus continued its steady decline, falling to 265 — the fewest since the Ministry of Health began reported hospitalization figures in early April.
The number of those being treated in intensive care units and with ventilators also both declined, by 10 and 1, respectively.
Ontario’s official COVID-19 death toll grew by 3, up to 2,609. A CBC News count based on data from public health units put the real current total at 2,647. About three quarters of all deaths in the province were residents in long-term care homes.