- Following an increase in COVID-19 transmission in the city, Toronto’s top doctor urges residents to wear face masks in public indoor settings once again.
- In the last 24 hours, 19% of all samples have tested positive, the highest percentage since the pandemic’s 5th wave, which Omicron fueled, peaked on January 18.
Following an increase in COVID-19 transmission in the city, Toronto’s top doctor urges residents to back to wearing face masks in public indoor settings.
The mask mandate was lifted for most settings by the Ford government last month. Still, with wastewater surveillance showing a significant increase in COVID-19 activity in Ontario, some epidemiologists are calling for it to be reinstated.
At a press conference on Monday, Dr. Eileen de Villa, Toronto Medical Officer of Health, said mandates aren’t appropriate in the pandemic because they were always meant to be a “temporary tool” for a time when few other protections existed.
She does, however, encourage Torontonians to keep wearing masks as much as possible, especially now that COVID-19 is circulating to such a high level in the community.
Her remarks come after several other local medical health officers, including Ottawa’s top doctor, gave similar advice to residents.
“We should expect to adjust our behavior from time to time to use all of the layers of self-defense that we have available to respond appropriately to COVID-19 activity in our community. It’s one of those occasions, “According to de Villa. “Wearing a mask is a simple stuff we can all do, especially if we’re older, have older people in our lives, have a serious health condition, or are simply indoors with strangers.”
Over the last week, the number of people in Ontario hospitals with COVID-19 has increased by more than 30%, to 857.
Over the last 24 hours, 19% of all samples have tested positive, the highest percentage since the pandemic’s fifth wave, which Omicron fueled, peaked on Jan. 18.
At a press conference, De Villa stated to reporters to discuss a new vaccination campaign that the increase in virus activity is not surprising given the lifting of most public health measures.
However, she did say that it must serve as a reminder that “we are not post-pandemic, no point how exhausted we are or how much we wish it were.”
“I believe we have the tools and knowledge to help us see our way through regardless of what decisions the province makes,” she said.
When asked last week if the province would consider reimposing the mask mandate, Health Minister Christine Elliott said it “doesn’t appear necessary” at this time.
Ontarians, according to Elliott, “need to get on with our lives and learn to live with COVID.”
Source: CTV news
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