Ontario reports 344 new COVID-19 cases, 41 more deaths

Henrietta Brewer
May 31, 2020

The Financial Accountability Officer reports that, of the $17 billion in new spending promised by the Ontario government to support the fight against COVID-19, $3.5 billion is either overstated or simply continues spending commitments from previous years, such as the province's electricity-price subsidies. "Fixing what we inherited starts with strong leadership through this crisis and beyond to protect and care for our long-term care residents", Ford said.

Families, advocates for the elderly and others have long warned that staffing levels are inadequate, staff members are underpaid and homes desperately need upgrading.

The province also confirmed five more outbreaks in long-term care facilities, bringing the total to 305 outbreaks in homes.

The province says the changes will be effective June 1 and last until October 31, while industrial and commercial businesses will also see an extension of the COVID-19 relief through the end of June.

Ontario has meant to do 16,000 tests per day throughout May, and while it has met that goal less than half of the time, the numbers have increased in recent days, with 18,525 tests reported today.

Provincial parks will also expand permission for picnics and off-leash pet areas.

The Ontario government said on Saturday it would boost funds for retirement home residents in cases of emergency. It includes 2,247 deaths and 21,353 cases that have been resolved.

He will be joined by Christine Elliott, Deputy Premier and Minister of Health, and Merrilee Fullerton, Minister of Long-Term Care, to make the announcement.

The number of people in hospital with COVID-19 and in intensive care dropped, but the number of people on ventilators rose from 94 to 100.

Anyone concerned that they may have been exposed to COVID-19 can now get tested, whether or not they have symptoms.

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