The number of new COVID-19 infections in Ontario appears to have slowed, according to the head of the province’s scientific table.
Speaking to CP24 on Wednesday night, Dr Peter Juni, the scientific director of the table, said the latest wastewater data showed the province could have reached 100,000 cases of COVID-19 a day.
“We see that he has reached a plateau. Maybe it can go down. But it’s important that we don’t get ahead of ourselves, “June said.
He warned that cases were still likely to rise, especially after Easter weekend.
“We know we’ve slowed down. Is this a plateau now and are we staying on a high plateau? Will we go up again, especially after Easter? It will depend on us. Or will we start going down? We need a few more days of data to be a little more confident, but it certainly looks much better than six or seven days ago, “he said.
Last week, Juni said the province probably sees between 100,000 and 120,000 new cases of COVID-19 every day. Ontario is currently in its sixth wave of the pandemic, powered by the BA.2 Omicron transmission sub-variant.
On Wednesday, Ontario reported 13 net new deaths from COVID-19 and 1,332 people in hospital with the virus.
Juni noted that the delay could be due to several things, including accumulated immunity through vaccination and infection. He estimated that about six million Ontario residents have been infected with Omicron since December last year.
He also said that time has played a role, noting that mobility data show that people have been more outdoors where transmission is thought to be lower.
June added that he had also heard that more and more people were taking steps to protect themselves from COVID-19.
“I’ve heard from a lot of colleagues that people have been more careful with more camouflage, less crowding, etc.,” he said.
Looking ahead to the long weekend, June urged Easter celebrants to do so outdoors if weather permits.
“It will help a lot,” he said. “Go to parks and enjoy an early barbecue. Much better than indoors.”
“So I’m happy for this plateau, but I’d be even more excited if we were all a little more careful for a few more weeks,” he added.
The scientific community is expected to release a new modeling of COVID-19 on Thursday at 1 p.m.