Shomporko Desk:-Ontario is reporting a massive spike in COVID-19 cases after increased testing in the Windsor-Essex area found 177 infections among temporary migrant farm workers.
Provincial public health officials reported a complete of 257 new cases, bringing Ontario’s complete cases to 34,911. Of those cases, 86.5 per cent are resolved – or 30,196.
The province reported 111 new cases on Friday, 160 on Saturday and 178 on Sunday.
“After extensive testing this weekend of temporary workers in Southwestern Ontario, the province is reporting 177 new cases of COVID-19 in Windsor-Essex, with another 80 new cases across the rest of the province. There were over 27,000 tests processed yesterday,” Health Minister Christine Elliott said Monday.
Last week, the province announced a major push to test as many migrant farmworkers in southwestern Ontario as possible and also enacted a measure that would allow workers who tested positive for the virus but did not show symptoms to keep working.
Three migrant workers have died so far across Ontario, and all known infections among migrant farmworkers were acquired in the province after completing a 14-day quarantine upon entry.
The infections in Essex and the surrounding area prompted the Ford government to hold back the towns of Kingsville and Leamington, Ont. from moving to Stage 2 of the province’s reopening plan.
Both communities are heavily tied to local agriculture and migrant workers frequently shop and spend their free time in them.
The province also reported seven more deaths caused by the virus, bringing the total since the outbreak began to 2,665.
Only 89 patients recovered from the virus in the past 24 hours, meaning Ontario’s active case count rose sharply Monday from 1,889 to 2,050.
Peel Region accounted for half of the 80 cases outside Windsor-Essex, while Toronto Public Health revised its case count down by four cases, blaming the change on duplicate entries in its case management system.
Provincial labs turned around 27,127 tests in the last 24 hours, with further 16,701 specimens under investigation.
The number of people admitted to the hospital for treatment of COVID-19 symptoms rose to 232 on Monday, up from 214 on Sunday.
The number of people admitted to ICUs across Ontario fell by five to 46, while the number of people breathing with the help of a ventilator rose by one to 36.
Photo credit: Nick Lachance
News source: CP24