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Ontario to release ‘stark’ COVID-19 projections Friday

Ontario to release ‘stark’ COVID-19 projections Friday

Premier Doug Ford promising a ‘sobering discussion’ about the coronavirus

Ontario Premier Doug Ford is pictured during a press briefing at the Ontario Legislature. Ford promised Thursday to release his government’s projections on COVID-19 death rates. He said the data would be ‘sobering.’ (Chris Young/The Canadian Press)

Provincial health experts are expected to provide a briefing Friday on modelling projections for the spread of COVID-19 in Ontario.

At a Thursday afternoon press conference, Premier Doug Ford promised health officials would explain “where this could go.” Ford said the people of the province “deserve to see” the same data about the pandemic that he sees.

“People are going to see some really stark figures,” Ford said.

“It’s going to be a real sobering discussion.”

Matthew Anderson, the head of Ontario Health, Adalsteinn Brown, dean of the University of Toronto’s public health department, and Dr. Peter Donnelly, who heads Public Health Ontario, will hold a news conference to explain the models. CBC news will stream that briefing live starting at around 12 p.m. E.T.

Most ICU beds full

The number of available intensive care beds in certain parts of the Greater Toronto Area is rapidly shrinking as the number of COVID-19 patients surges higher, according to data obtained by CBC News.

Just 13 critical care beds remain available among the 153 ICU beds in the hospitals of the Central Local Health Integration Network, which includes Mackenzie Richmond Hill, Markham Stouffville, Southlake, Humber River, and North York General hospitals. 

Those hospitals are caring for 28 patients with confirmed cases of COVID-19 — double the number they were four days earlier.  

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