After he begged the public to go and get tested last week, there’s now some good news for Premier Doug Ford. On Friday, Ontario’s COVID-19 testing numbers reached a record high, as more than 20,000 people were checked for the disease. This surpassed Ford’s goal of 16,000 tests per day for the third day in a row.

After previously being heavily criticised for Ontario’s low COVID-19 testing numbers, there’s been a turnaround for the region’s premier.

On Friday, the province confirmed that a record 20,640 tests had been completed on Friday, May 29. Of those, 323 new cases were confirmed. 

Considering more than 20,000 people were tested, Friday had some of the lowest positive rates the province has experienced in months.

The increase comes just one week after Doug Ford begged Ontarians to go and get tested, regardless of whether they had symptoms of the disease.

On May 29, the province announced that testing is now available province-wide, and a plan is in place to target vulnerable people and priority sectors. Both symptomatic and asymptomatic people will be offered tests.

"Ontario now has the most open and robust testing criteria in the entire country. In fact, anyone who feels they need a test will be able to get a test," said Premier Ford in a statement.

In a tweet on Saturday, Deputy Premier Christine Elliott explained, "Yesterday, Ontario processed over 20,000 tests, using the full capacity of our lab network."

She continued, "By increasing testing both at assessment centres and through targeted campaigns, we can identify and contain new cases of #COVID19 and stop the spread of the virus."

Since the beginning of the outbreak, 27,533 people in Ontario have tested positive for the disease. 21,353 of those have recovered.

Earlier this week, the premier revealed that the province was considering reopening on a region-by-region basis, depending on the severity of each area’s COVID-19 situation.

This could mean that places like Toronto could remain in lockdown for a lot longer than the rest of Ontario.

"Our assessment centers are ready to receive you and the only way we can get those testing numbers up, the only way we can get those numbers where they need to be is for everyone who feels they need it to go get tested," Ford stated last week.

Symptoms or not, feel free to get tested Ontario!

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