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coronavirus update

Woman in her 30s confirmed as Ontario's 35th coronavirus patient

A new case of the novel 2019 coronavirus has been reported in the Greater Toronto Area, this one involving a woman in her 30s with no recent history of travel.

Ontario's Ministry of Health announced the province's 35th confirmed case of COVID-19 with an update on its dedicated coronavirus web page Monday evening.

The patient is said to have presented at Brampton Civic Hospital and to have contracted the virus through "close contact."

Little else has been made public at this time, but the province's Chief Medical Officer of Health, Dr. David Williams, is expected to provide more information during his regularly-scheduled media briefing at Queen's Park this Thursday at 3 p.m.

As of early Tuesday morning, 35 cases of COVID-19 had been confirmed in Ontario, four of them already resolved. Another 22 are currently under investigation within the province.

Ontario has tested 2,404 people for the deadly virus since the outbreak began in late December and has now registered 2,347 negative results.

Christine Elliott, the province's Minister of Health, said on Monday that her department continues to act on the advice of top heath officials, who maintain that the virus is not circulating locally.

"I think it's really important that we respond to the situation that’s happening in Ontario and not move according to what other countries have been doing, because they have their own particular circumstances," she told reporters.

"We do have a plan in place and we will escalate as — and when — we see the need to do so."

Canada-wide, the patient tally continues to rise with 78 confirmed cases. A North Vancouver, B.C., man in his 80s became the first person in Canada to die as a result of contracting COVID-19  on March 8.

The World Health Organization (WHO) reported on March 9 that 109,577 cases of the virus had been recorded globally with 3,808 fatalities.

Most of the deaths to date have taken place in China, where the outbreak originated, though 28,673 cases have now been confirmed across 104 other countries outside of China, with 686 deaths registered.

"As you know, over the weekend we crossed 100,000 reported cases of COVID-19 in 100 countries," said WHO Director-General Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus during a media briefing on Monday afternoon.

"Now that the virus has a foothold in so many countries, the threat of a pandemic has become very real," he continued. "But it would be the first pandemic in history that could be controlled."

"The bottom line is: we are not at the mercy of this virus."

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