The recently released provincial model suggests that Ontario’s COVID-19 case counts will remain stable, even with more social contacts, if some public health measures are maintained.
The Ontario COVID-19 Scientific Advisory Board released its updated projections on Friday. The team cited favorable figures due to high vaccination rates in the province and continued public health measures, but cautioned the need to maintain some measures and focus on vaccinating young children when eligible.
In three scenarios, case counts (worst to best) are projected to remain below 700 by the end of November at worst, and at best about 200 new cases will be seen for end of the month.
The scenarios were based on a substantial increase in contact between people, increased contact, and maintenance of the status quo with no changes in behavior or policy. All models assume that public health measures such as masking, vaccination certificates, ventilation, and symptom detection continue.
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Ontario has seen a daily decline in cases for the past month, averaging seven days from around 700 to 400. Active cases have also decreased. However, most, but not all, local public health units are experiencing a decline in cases.
In addition, hospitalizations and those in intensive care units have remained stable in recent weeks. These are also expected to remain stable until the end of November in all scenarios.
The tests and the positivity of the tests in the province have remained unchanged, the scientific table noted.
The scientific table warned that the lifting of public health measures may fuel a new wave, even with strong vaccine coverage pointing to what has happened in some Nordic countries like Denmark and Finland, which opened too much and too quickly.
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Child and youth vaccination against COVID-19
The science board also said that as we move into the colder months, vaccinating children will be key, once it is approved by Health Canada.
Children 11 years and younger are not yet eligible to be vaccinated and remain unprotected.
“If we adopt smart and personalized strategies, such as working with children, parents, schools and communities, we can set the course for a robust immunization program in children when the vaccine is approved in the youngest age groups,” noted the table of science in your report.
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The scientific board also said that vaccination is still very effective. He said unvaccinated people have a seven times greater risk of symptomatic COVID-19 disease, a 17 times greater risk of being in the hospital and a 23 times greater risk of being in the ICU compared to people who are fully vaccinated.
The latest provincial figures show that in Ontario, more than 87 percent of people over the age of 12 have received at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine and 83.6 percent are fully vaccinated.
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