Ontario reports 32 more COVID-19 deaths as hospitalizations decrease to 1,676

Ontario health officials are reporting 1,676 people in hospital with COVID-19 on Thursday — 22 fewer than the previous day’s total, but 15 more than a week ago.

The Ministry of Health also reported 32 deaths due to the virus, and 10 were long-term care residents.

There have been 410 COVID-related fatalities in the past month.

Of Thursday’s hospitalizations, 205 patients are in intensive care units (ICUs), an increase of six over the previous day. The number is three fewer than last week’s total of 202.

Meanwhile, 100 patients in ICUs are breathing with the help of ventilators.

The Ministry of Health says 43 per cent of hospitalized patients were admitted directly for COVID-19-related treatment, while 57 per cent were admitted for other reasons but also tested positive for the virus.

Sixty-five per cent of the patients in ICU were hospitalized for COVID-related treatment.

The province processed 17,927 tests in the last 24 hours, and reported 2,700 new cases of COVID-19 on Thursday. But health officials have warned that number is a significant underestimation due to testing limitations.

The scientific director of Ontario’s panel of COVID-19 advisers has said multiplying the daily case count by 20 would give a more accurate picture.

The ministry says the province’s positivity rate is about 13 per cent, a decrease of 1.3 per cent compared to Wednesday.

Since the start of the pandemic, 12,921 individuals have died from COVID-19.

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