Premier Doug Ford says Ontario will have 500 more contact tracers and case managers on the ground by mid-November.
One hundred contact tracers were hired this week, the premier said in a press conference today.
A press release issued today states these new positions are part the province's fall preparedness plan, Keeping Ontarians Safe: Preparing for Future Waves of COVID-19, which dedicates $1.376 billion to enhance and expand testing and contact tracing in the province.
According to the release, Ontario Public Service (OPS) staff are also volunteering for redeployment to provide surge support for contact tracing this fall and winter, and over 600 Statistics Canada employees have been onboarded since July to assist with contact follow-up.
Additionally, the provincial government has confirmed it will be partnering with Ian Martin, an Ontario-based recruitment firm, in order to expedite the onboarding of additional staff.
There are currently more than 2,750 case and contact management staff active across all public health units, tracing and managing COVID-19 cases ― up from approximately 1,500 staff in the spring.
These 600 new recruits and 600 personnel from Statistics Canada will bring the total number of case and contact management staff to nearly 4,000.
Premier Doug Ford is slated to provide a COVID-19 update at 1 p.m. at Queen's Park today.
The premier will be joined by Deputy Premier and Minister of Health Christine Elliott and Associate Chief Medical Officer of Health Dr. Barbara Yaffe to make the announcement.
Village Media will carry the livestream, so stay tuned.