Canada

COVID-19: Ontario new case count remains low, contact tracing app delayed

After taking a pause for Canada Day, Ontario has updated its daily COVID-19 case counts to report 149 new confirmed cases Wednesday and 153 Thursday, continuing a trend of low daily case growth while more than 50,000 COVID-19 tests were processed in Ontario in the last two days.

The province also recorded four additional deaths Thursday, bringing its COVID-19 death toll to 2,680.

There are currently 60 ongoing outbreaks of the virus in Ontario long-term care homes, 16 in retirement homes and four in hospitals.

Meanwhile, a new mobile app meant to help with contact tracing of COVID-19 cases won’t roll out across Ontario today as planned.

A spokeswoman for the Ministry of Health says the province is still working with the federal government and the app is expected to launch soon.

The province will be the first to use the COVID Alert app, but Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has said it should be ready for downloading in the rest of the country later this summer. The app will be voluntary, and will notify users based on a number of criteria, including if they were within two metres of a person who tests positive for the virus and if that contact took place over an extended period of time.

The province didn’t give a new date for the app’s launch.

Locally, the Leeds, Grenville & Lanark and Renfrew County and District health units reported no new cases of COVID-19 on Thursday, while the Eastern Ontario Health Unit reported one.

-With files from The Canadian Press

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