'The pandemic is not over,' Toronto's top doctor warns as city sees 387 new COVID-19 cases
City remains in grey-lockdown level of province's COVID-19 restrictions
Toronto has now administered 263,532 doses of COVID-19 vaccine with the promise of more supply coming soon, but Dr. Eileen de Villa warned the city is still at risk.
"The pandemic is not over," she said, noting coronavirus variants that are circulating in this city have caused lockdowns and waves of infections in Europe.
De Villa said she's concerned Toronto's numbers are going in the wrong direction, noting the 7-day average of new cases has now climbed to 420.
Device data, meanwhile, indicates more Torontonians are on the move again, raising the prospect that the variants of concern will spread faster and potentially to neighbouring areas with fewer restrictions.
De Villa's advice: Continue taking every precaution you can — particularly when it comes to maintaining distance from other people from outside of your household — and get your vaccine as soon as you're eligible.
Mayor John Tory said that's adding urgency to the work of getting vaccines in arms, and that the city's making solid progress on that front.
"I know people are eager to get the vaccine," Tory said, noting he's urging the provincial and federal government to send as many doses to the city as possible.
The city has also launched a new COVID-19 Vaccine Confidence Working Group, with the goal of making more people confident in getting the vaccine when it's their turn. Dr. Vinita Dubey, the city's associate medical officer of health, is leading the effort.
The city once again saw the most new COVID-19 infections in the province on Monday with 387, despite being in the grey-lockdown section of the province's reopening framework.
3 more mass vaccination clinics to open by April 5
Meanwhile, Toronto says it will have three more mass COVID-19 vaccination clinics open by April 5.
That will bring the total number of operating mass immunization sites to six.
Tory says that the Malvern Community Recreation Centre and the Mitchell Field Community Centre will begin COVID-19 vaccinations on March 29.
He says that The Hangar Sport and Events Centre will open on April 5.
Three clinics — the Metro Toronto Convention Centre, the Scarborough Town Centre and the Toronto Congress Centre — are already scheduled to open for mass vaccinations on Wednesday.
All six clinics will operate from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. seven days a week.
Tory says that those hours may be modified depending on demand for appointments and supply of COVID-19 vaccines.
Vaccination efforts are continuing across the city and wider GTA. Here's CBC Toronto's guide to getting a vaccine if you qualify.
With files from The Canadian Press