May 20th, 2020

FACT CHECK: Health Minister responds to lagging testing with false statements

QUEEN’S PARK — As Ontario’s COVID-19 testing fell to a paltry 7,382, well short of the current 20,000-test goal, Minister of Health Christine Elliott has tried to paper over the major concerns with false statements.

May 19:

Elliott: “The Premier said that our testing capacity is world-leading because it’s actually true.”
FACT: Ontario would be 40th in the world, if it was a country.[1]

Elliott: “Ontario is the leader in Canada for testing.”
FACT: Ontario is fifth in Canada for testing.[2]

Elliott: “We’ve met our testing capacity 91 per cent of the time.”
FACT: Ontario has never met its 21,000-test capacity, and missed its own targets all but one time since April 15.[3]

May 20:

Elliott: “We’ve now been able to do up to 20,000 tests per day. Does that ebb and flow a bit? Yes it does.”
FACT: Ontario has not yet completed 20,000 tests on any day.[4]

Elliott: “We continue to remain the province that has the highest testing per 100,000 people across this entire country, despite starting off in a situation that was less than ideal compared to some of the other provinces.”
FACT: Ontario is fifth in Canada for testing per 100,000 people.[5]

“As the economy re-opens, a massive testing regime in the community is critical to keeping people safe and preventing a resurgence of COVID-19,” said Toronto-Centre NDP MPP Suze Morrison, who questioned Elliott about testing in the legislature Wednesday.

“We don’t need the minister to make up tales to defend herself — we need Doug Ford and Christine Elliott to get to the bottom of shockingly low testing, and fix it.”


[1] World O’ Meters, May 20 2020,

[2] Government of Canada COVID-19 Epidemiological Report, May 19 2020.

[3] Calculations by the NDP Caucus using Ontario’s own public testing data.

[4] Ontario raw testing data. May 20 2020.

[5] Government of Canada COVID-19 Epidemiological Report, May 19 2020.