covid 19 ontario

Ontario blames data glitch for today's high number of new COVID-19 cases

It looks like yesterday's excellent news that Ontario had recorded its lowest new number of COVID-19 cases since March wasn't so great after all... because it didn't actually happen.

The province in fact confirmed a total of 345 new patients  on Wednesday — not 258 as reported through its official coronavirus web portal Thursday morning.

Some 87 new cases were simply left out of yesterday's count due to what the Ministry of Health is now calling a "one-time upload issue." (A similar incident of inaccurate case counts happened in Quebec earlier this month).

While some may be disappointed to learn of the under-reportage, this is actually a very good thing when taking today's numbers into consideration.

The Ministry of Health's website currently shows that 428 new cases of the virus were confirmed on Thursday, marking the highest one-day increase seen in Ontario since May 7 and representing an increase rate of 2.0 per cent.

This figure includes the cases that were missed in Thursday's report, however, meaning that today's number should be 341 (and yesterday's should have been 345).

"We've learned of a small glitch with yesterday's COVID-19 reporting," said Health Minister Christine Elliot on Friday morning. "Because of a one-time data upload issue, yesterday missed 87 cases. While they're captured in today's update, the real day-over-day numbers are 345 new cases on May 14 and 341 today. 

"That means Ontario’s new daily cases continue to trend downward as we expand our COVID-19 testing guidelines to ensure we keep a close eye on any shifts in community spread and identify and contain new cases."

The province's total tally of coronavirus cases currently sits at 21,922, with the vast majority of them now considered to be "resolved."

With 16,641 patients recovered (by the Ministry of Health's standards) and 1,825 dead, Ontario now has an overall recovery rate of 75.9 per cent and a mortality rate of 8.3 per cent. The Ministry of Long Term Care is reporting that 1,320 of those killed by COVID-19 so far were residents of long term care homes.

Ontario isn't out of the clear by far, but government officials seem confident enough in the numbers to enter Stage One of their economic reopening plan on Tuesday.

Whether or not this is a good idea remains to be seen, but we do know that the province has successfully managed to ramp up its testing rates: Thursday saw the highest number of new COVID-19 tests completed in one day at 18,354 tests... unless that figure is also the result of a glitch.

Lead photo by

Hector Vasquez

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