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Ontario will expand COVID-19 vaccine booster eligibility starting Jan. 4 to all adults six months past their second shot.

It’s one of a suite of measures announced Friday meant to combat the spread of the virus.

The province also “strongly” advises residents to limit gatherings over the holiday season and urges employers to make every effort to allow employees to work from home.

Canadians travelling abroad face ‘risky and unstable’ situation, Health Minister says

The province also announced it is extending its vaccine certificate program until further notice.

The province had previously intended to start lifting proof-of-vaccination requirements in January.

The proof-of-vaccination system will also be updated on Jan. 4 so that the certificate equipped with a QR code is the only version accepted.

Meanwhile, Ontario is reporting 1,453 new cases of COVID-19 today and 11 more deaths.

It’s the highest the daily case count has been since May 23, when the province logged 1,691 diagnoses.

Of today’s cases, 639 are in people who are unvaccinated or have only one dose, and 718 are in people who are fully vaccinated, while 96 have an unknown vaccination status.

Of the 309 people in hospital with COVID-19, 75 are fully vaccinated.

Health Minister Christine Elliott says 151 people are in intensive care units with COVID-19, including 122 who are not fully vaccinated or who have an unknown vaccination status.

Friday’s case count comes as the government is expected to announce it will extend its vaccine certificate rules and make changes to the program.

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