‘Careful optimism’ as Ontario scientists say the direction of the pandemic has turned

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The head of Ontario's COVID-19 Science Table recommends people use the two out of three rules for meeting people outdoors seen above.

Scientist hint school opening may be possible

The head of Ontario’s COVID-19 Science Table says allowing kids to return to school June 2 would increase cases of the virus but it may be manageable.

Dr. Stein Brown is giving an update on the state of pandemic in Ontario this hour and he says “the direction of the pandemic has turned.”

Ontario Chief Medical Officer of Health, Dr. David Williams, says the rate of daily COVID-19 cases is down 22 per cent; better he says, but lot higher than we were in the dip between second and third wave.

“We have a ways to go. We’re moving at a good pace at this time,” Williams says.

“The trends remain encouraging but the numbers are still high.”

“If we’re careful and cautious that gets us to a good summer,” says Dr. Brown. He adds some public health measures will have to be maintained after June 2 – the date the Stay-at-Home order is scheduled to end.

Brown says maintaining measures to June 16 and vaccinating 130,000 people a day, the number of new cases would be below 500 day by the end of July.

And he suggested opening schools on June 2 “will create an increase in cases but this may be manageable, at least in some regions.”

Brown adds that outdoor activities remain much safer than indoor activities. And he asked people to use the two out of three rule; if you meet people outside and you can stay two meters apart, you don’t need to wear a mask. If you can’t keep your distance, mask up.

Williams also encouraged people to take any activity outdoors this long weekend, but to still use caution. He adds people should keep the number of people in one place low.

Premier Doug Ford is set to release the province’s opening plan at 3 pm.