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WATCH: Ford says COVID-19 second wave is here and it 'will be worse'

Announcement comes after province reports record number of COVID-19 cases

1:42 p.m. update:

Premier Doug Ford said the sharp increase in COVID-19 cases today is "deeply concerning." He said health officials are also confirming that Ontario is now experiencing a 'second wave' of the virus.

"We know that we're in the second wave and we know that it will be worse than the first wave, but what we don't know yet is how bad the second wave will be," said Ford.

Ford urged Ontarians to "tip the scale" to avoid the worst by downloading the COVID-19 contact tracing app, following public safety measures, and getting your flu shot.

Health Minister Christine Elliott said the province is watching the situation, as the Ontario Hospital Association is calling on leaders to move Toronto, the GTA and Ottawa back to Stage 2.

"We don't want to turn back a stage unless we absolutely have to, but if we have to we will, because the most important thing is the health and wellbeing of the people Ontario," said Elliott.

Dr. David WIlliams, Ontario's Chief Medical Officer of Health, described a more targeted or 'surgical' tightening of restrictions happening in response to the second wave as local Medical Officers of Health are equipped now with better data about the types of outbreaks and the places they are happening. He noted the virus is presenting itself differently now and presenting itself differently across the province.

While there could be some restrictions across the province local Medical Officers of health area taking "more selective action in risk areas that they see are particular for their jurisdiction."

He said the province is seeing more variating on how the virus is presenting, noting the current swell of cases is most concentrated in the four to five dense urban areas of Ontario.

Williams said the province is "on the upward slope of the second wave" with potential that it will be worse than the first wave, particularly if Ontario sees a 'tsunami' shaped wave.

Williams also noted that the province at the height of the previous wave was doing around 10,000 tests a day. Ontario is now doing 41,000 to 43,000 tests per day.

Original story:

Today, Premier Doug Ford will be joined by Christine Elliott, Deputy Premier and Minister of Health, for an announcement from Queen's Park.

The province reported 700 COVID-19 cases today, a record number to date in a single day.

The announcement will begin at approximately 1 p.m.

Village Media will carry the livestream once it begins, so please stay tuned.




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