TORONTO — After more than a month under a stay-at-home order, Ontario is turning a corner in the COVID-19 pandemic, but the province’s science advisory table says public health measures are still needed to ensure a “good summer.”
The table released the findings during a news conference Thursday, in which they said that case numbers, as well as positivity and hospitalization rates, are decreasing largely due to increased vaccinations and stringent lockdown measures.
They said the rate of vaccinations will need to stay high and that some public health restrictions are still required until mid-June to keep the third wave of the novel coronavirus in Ontario at bay.
“Our vaccine rollout has been impressive as of late…and the public health measures, however taxing and frustrating, have helped stop the spread,” said Dr. Adalsteinn Brown, co-chair of the province’s COVID-19 science table.
In the meantime, the table says that outdoor activities continue to be safe options for Ontarians to pursue as the stay-at-home order remains in place until at least June 2.
Under the order, which went into effect on April 8 and was extended by two weeks twice after that date, outdoor amenities like basketball courts and golf course are required to close.
However, Health Minister Christine Elliott said earlier this week that the province would reopen outdoor those recreational amenities “on or before June 2.”
On Thursday afternoon, Premier Doug Ford will reveal the details of the province’s long-awaited reopening plan.
A day earlier, Solicitor General Sylvia Jones suggested that Ontario would scrap the regional reopening approach that was used following the province’s first two lockdowns and instead introduce a “sector by sector” reopening strategy.
This is a breaking news story. More to come.
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