OTTAWA – There was a slight dip in new reported COVID-19 cases today (Sept. 17), but the city is still a hotspot and the province is reducing the number of people allowed at gathering as a result.

Ottawa Public Health (OPH) is reporting 39 new cases of COVID-19 in the city, while it adds another couple institutions to its outbreak list.

City View Centre: Child and Family Services and city-run long-term care home Garry J. Armstrong are both reporting single staff cases of the virus.

They are the most recent of 21 institutions currently dealing with COVID-19 in the Ottawa area.

The OPH says it now knows of 420 active cases of COVID-19 in the city.

The overall number of lab-confirmed COVID-19 cases in Ottawa since the start of the pandemic is at 3,486, of which 2,793 (80.1 per cent) have been resolved.

No new COVID-19-related deaths were reported in Ottawa on Thursday keeping the overall local death toll at 273.

Ontario is lowering the number of people permitted at social gatherings in three regions including Ottawa that have recently seen a spike in COVID-19 cases.

The change will only affect Toronto, Peel Region and Ottawa, and will not apply to businesses like restaurants, movie theatres or banquet halls.

Premier Doug Ford says starting Friday (Sept. 17) only 10 people will be allowed to gather indoors, down from the current limit of 25, while the number for outdoor gatherings will drop from 100 to 25.

Fines for the organizers of events that violate the new rules will be a minimum of $10,000, while those attending the gatherings with face $750 fines.

Ford and medical officials have linked social gatherings to the increase in virus rates in some regions of the province.

Ontario is reporting 293 new cases of COVID-19 today, and three new deaths related to the coronavirus. Health Minister Christine Elliott said Toronto is reporting 85 new cases, with 63 in Peel Region.

Elliott said 70 per cent of the new cases are in people under the age of 40.

The total number of cases in Ontario now stands at 45,676, which includes 2,825 deaths and 40,424 cases classified as resolved. There were also 179 cases newly marked as resolved over the past 24 hours.

The province said it processed 35,134 tests over the previous day.