Ottawa

Ottawa has 78 more COVID-19 cases, 1 more death

Ottawa Public Health (OPH) is reporting 78 more confirmed cases of COVID-19 as officials examine whether the dwindling turnout at testing centres may be skewing certain results.

Dwindling turnout at testing centres may be skewing case counts, says task force

A woman walks past a flu shot sign on a pharmacy in Ottawa on Oct. 15, 2020. (Sean Kilpatrick/Canadian Press)

Ottawa Public Health (OPH) is reporting 78 more confirmed cases of COVID-19 as officials examine whether the dwindling turnout at testing centres may be skewing certain results.

According to OPH, 91 more cases are resolved and one more person has died from COVID-19.

That means 6,166 Ottawa residents have now tested positive for COVID-19, including 745 known active case, 5,117 resolved cases and 304 deaths.

Forty-six patients are currently in hospital being treated for COVID-19, including six in intensive care. Those numbers have remained relatively steady for several days.

Officials managing testing in Ottawa have raised the possibility that confirmed case counts may be dropping because fewer people are getting tested. The testing backlog at local labs has improved significantly, but hundreds are still awaiting results. OPH is currently learning of positive test results within 48 hours 70 per cent of the time.

That's changed from a few weeks ago when long lines at local testing sites forced authorities to change to an appointment-based system that discouraged testing unless people had symptoms or a referral. Currently, about 2.5 per cent of tests in Ottawa are coming back positive.

A report coming this afternoon from Ottawa's testing task force will reflect the first day in operation at a new testing site in Orléans.

 

OPH is reporting no new outbreaks at schools or hospitals. Slightly more than half of Tuesday's new cases are people below age 40.

Elsewhere, there are 49 more cases in western Quebec, which saw a spike in COVID-19 hospitalizations from 11 to 17 on Monday. Four more cases have been confirmed in Belleville, Ont.

The Eastern Ontario Health Unit's medical officer of health said that area will likely follow Ottawa and return to modified Stage 2 rules in coming days.

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