Ontario schools account for significant number of new COVID-19 cases


Despite the fact Peel Region and Toronto are in lockdown, and Hamilton, Waterloo, Durham, Halton and York are facing stricter regulations, the number of new COVID-19 cases remains high.

According to the Ontario Health Coalition (OHC), between October 31 and November 18, the number of people infected in workplace outbreaks far exceeds the general community spread of the virus in the following workplace sectors: construction; schools and daycares; retail, restaurants and entertainment; and public services.

The number of cases in schools has increased by 1,865 cases for a cumulative total of 4,265 cases among students and education workers, as well 639 cases in childcare settings--this represents an 86.9-per-cent increase, the largest increase among workplace sectors.

The sector that saw the second-largest increase was retail, restaurants and entertainment, which saw cases increase by 71.65 per cent; followed by public services, which saw cases increase by 39.14 per cent.

Based on these findings, the number of work-place related cases has increased by 39.74 per cent in non-health-care settings during this three-week period.

Additionally, during the week of November 18, 35.4 per cent of new cases couldn't be traced back to a source.

The number of cases with an unknown source of exposure has continued to increase during the second wave, as Public Health Units in hotspots have been unable to keep up with contact tracing. 

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