COVID-19: Latest developments in the Greater Toronto Area on May 6

Here are the latest developments on the COVID-19 pandemic in the Greater Toronto Area for Thursday:


Ornge air ambulance transferred a startling high of 1,125 COVID-19 patients in April

Ornge air ambulance says it transferred 1,125 COVID-19 patients in ICUs in April and another 183 patients from May 1 to May 5.

April’s transfers were significantly higher than January, February and March which saw around 200-250 patients being transferred.

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The highest number of patients were from Brampton Civic Hospital with 270 patients, then Etobicoke General with 143, Humber River Hospital with 111 and Scarborough Hospital — Centenary Campus with 86 patients.

In April patients were taken to hospitals as far away as in Windsor, Thunder Bay, Ottawa, Sault. Ste Marie, Owen Sound and Sudbury.

In total from Jan 1 to May 6, 1,976 patients were transferred across the province to create ICU capacity, a spokesperson for Ornge said.

Of the 1,976 patients, 1,141 were taken by local paramedic services. There were 835 transported by Ornge, with 718 by Ornge’s critical care land ambulances, 65 by Ornge airplanes and 53 by Ornge helicopters.


More groups eligible to book COVID-19 vaccine appointments in Ontario

People aged 50 and older across Ontario are among a number of new groups who can book a COVID-19 vaccine appointment starting today.

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The newly eligible workers include those in the education, child-care, food and manufacturing sectors.

People aged 18 and up can book vaccine appointments if they live in hot-spot postal codes as of this week.

Peel Region says it will be offering vaccines to all residents aged 18 and older — not just those in hot-spot neighbourhoods — starting today, weeks ahead of the province’s schedule.

Read more:
More groups eligible to book COVID-19 vaccine appointments in Ontario


Status of cases in the GTA

Ontario reported 3,424 new COVID-19 cases on Thursday.

Of those:

  • 958 were in Toronto
  • 900 were in Peel Region
  • 291 were in York Region
  • 175 were in Durham Region
  • 129 were in Halton Region


Ontario reports more than 3,400 new COVID-19 cases, 26 deaths

Ontario is reporting 3,424 new COVID-19 cases on Thursday. The provincial total now stands at 483,057.

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The death toll in the province has risen to 8,213 as 26 more deaths were recorded.

Resolved cases increased by 3,997 from the previous day. The government said 54,118 tests were processed in the last 24 hours.

A total of 5,740,761 COVID-19 vaccine doses have been administered so far. That marks an increase of 141,038 vaccines in the last day, a one-day high for the province. There are 384,589 people fully vaccinated with two doses.

Read more:
Ontario reports more than 3,400 new COVID-19 cases, 26 deaths


Variants of concern in Ontario

Officials have listed breakdown data for the new VOCs (variants of concern) detected so far in the province which consist of the B.1.1.7 (first detected in the United Kingdom), B.1.351 (first detected in South Africa), P.1 (first detected in Brazil), as well as mutations that have no determined lineage.

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The B.1.1.7 VOC is currently the dominating known strain at 83,350 variant cases, which is up by 2,839 since the previous day, 326 B.1.351 variant cases which is up by nine, and 1,055 P.1 variant cases which is up by 54.


Cases, deaths and outbreaks in Ontario long-term care homes

According to the Ministry of Long-Term Care, there have been 3,762 deaths reported among residents and patients in long-term care homes across Ontario which is up by one death. Eleven virus-related deaths in total have been reported among staff.

There are 46 current outbreaks in homes, which is down by six from the previous day.

The ministry also indicated there are currently 62 active cases among long-term care residents and 163 active cases among staff — up by two and down by 17, respectively, in the last day.

— With files from The Canadian Press

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NOTE: This page will be updated throughout the day.





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