Premier Doug Ford said he won’t follow Quebec’s lead in shutting down hotspots, saying the situation between the two provinces is very different.
On Tuesday, Ford said that the situation in Quebec is “very different” than in Ontario, as Quebec has a much smaller population of around eight million, compared to Ontario’s 14.5 million.
“They currently have 247 people in hospitals. We have 137… Their outbreaks are a lot higher with higher cases and lower testing. I will always take the advice off of the chief medical officer,” the premier added.
Ontario’s chief medical officer, Dr. David Williams, also said that it is hard to “compare the two” as the situation is “very different.”
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He did note that other measures could be further enhanced but that the province is working with the local officers of health to strategically target hotspots rather than take a “broad sweep.”
Already, the province has restricted indoors gatherings from 50 to 10 people and outdoor gatherings from 100 to 15 people, with heavy fines in place for those not following the rules.
On Monday, Premier François Legault announced that in response to a situation that has now become “critical,” Montreal, Quebec City, and Chaudière-Appalaches will fall under the red zone classification as of this Thursday, October 1.
Under the classification, Legault said that only people living at the same address can be inside a home at the same time. However, there will be exceptions for people “having to receive one person from another address.”
Also bars, dining rooms, restaurants, theatres, cinemas, and “other gathering places” will be closed. Places of worship will be open for a maximum of 25 people at a time, but schools will remain open.
On Monday, Ontario reported 700 new coronavirus cases, the highest single-day count on record.
To date, there has been a total of 51,085 cases, with 43,450 resolved and 2,844 reported deaths.