OTTAWA -- Ontario's doctors are reminding all Ontarians to wear a face mask to stop the spread of COVID-19.

"Wearing a mask is one of the easiest and most effective things every single one of us can do to reduce the risk of spreading and catching COVID-19," said Dr. Samantha Hill, president of the Ontario Medical Association.

The OMA says doctors working on the front lines of the COVID-19 pandemic are concerned following news of more than 1,800 Ontarians testing positive for COVID-19 on both Friday and Saturday.

Public Health Ontario reported 1,700 new cases of COVID-19 across Ontario on Sunday, including 79 in Ottawa.

In a statement, the Ontario Medical Association says recent studies suggest that masks can reduce the severity of infection for anyone who does catch COVID-19.

The Ontario Medical Association offers the following advice to make masks effective:

  • Non-medical masks or face coverings should be made of at least three layers of tightly woven material, be large enough to cover the nose and mouth completely, fit securely and keep their shape after washing.
  • You should wash your hands before you put a face covering on and after you take it off. Remember the outside of the mask or covering is considered dirty.
  • Do not adjust your face covering or touch it in any way while wearing it. Do not share your mask. After you take it off, wash it in hot water or throw it out.

The OMA also says doctors are concerned about recent rallies by people claiming that pandemic lockdowns and restrictions are unlawful and causing more harm than good. There have been protests over the COVID-19 restrictions at a Toronto-area restaurant, outside Premier Doug Ford's house and in Waterloo over the past week.

The Ontario Medical Association recommends people continue to limit indoor gatherings to household members only and wash your hands frequently.