Taking Immediate Action to Stop the Spread of COVID-19 Variants


Our government is taking immediate and decisive action to stop the spread of new COVID-19 variants throughout the province. We are implementing a six-point plan which includes mandatory on-arrival testing of international travellers, enhanced screening and sequencing to identify the new variants, maintaining public health measures to keep people safe, strengthening case and contact management to track the spread of new cases, enhanced protections for vulnerable populations, and leveraging the latest data to inform public health decisions.

Key Messages

  • Over recent weeks, three new variants of the COVID-19 virus have been identified by the province as posing a significant threat to the health and well-being of Ontarians – the UK variant, the South African variant, and the Brazilian variant.
  • Emerging evidence has shown that these variants are more easily spread between people, with a potentially higher risk of severe illness or death. The UK variant, which is currently spreading in Ontario, is up to 56 per cent more transmissible.
  • The spread of any new COVID-19 variants is a significant threat to the province’s response to COVID-19. In response, the province is launching a six-point plan to prevent and stop the spread of the new COVID-19 variants of concern and protect communities across the province.
  • Ontario is taking immediate actions to deal with the threat of COVID-19 variants of concern by implementing mandatory testing of international travelers, ramping up laboratory capacity for screening and sequencing of positive cases, maintaining public health measures, strengthening case and contact management measures, enhancing protection for our most vulnerable populations, and leveraging analytics to inform further planning.
  • Everyone’s actions have consequences. With the potential of new variants spreading, it’s more important than ever to continue following public health advice and measures to keep our communities safe – this is the best way to prevent the spread of COVID-19 and protect yourself and others from getting sick.

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