COVID-19 in B.C.: Data shows province has made progress over previous weeks

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      Case numbers remain roughly around similar levels as previous days, but the number of deaths is lower than the weekend.

      Today, the B.C. Centre for Disease Control (BCCDC) issued its weekly situation report for January 31 to February 6 (Week 5).

      Within the specified period, the report notes that there were decreases in cases in Interior Health and Vancouver Coastal Health while cases in other health regions remained stable.

      There were also decreases in hospitalized cases (from 213 cases in Week 2 to 152 cases in Week 5) and the number of deaths (72 deaths in Week 3 to 44 deaths in Week 5) in the weeks prior to February 6 (see graph below).

      However, at yesterday’s in-person briefing, B.C. provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry said that numbers still remain too high and that there are some areas of concern, including more recent upticks in cases in Vancouver Coastal Health and Fraser Health (based on activity over the past two weeks). Accordingly, she cautioned that further transmission events need to be prevented.

      In other news today, the B.C. Supreme Court denied a request for an injunction, filed by B.C. Attorney General David Eby and Henry, to stop three churches in the Fraser Valley from holding in-person services in violation of provincial health orders.

      The three churches are taking legal action to overturn the provincial health order banning in-person religious services.

      B.C. Centre for Disease Control

      B.C. update: February 17

      Henry and B.C. Health Minister Adrian Dix announced in a joint statement that there are 427 new cases (including 20 epi-linked cases) today. By region, that includes:

      • 236 new cases in Fraser Health (55 percent);
      • 90 in Vancouver Coastal Health (21 percent);
      • 47 in Interior Health region (11 percent);
      • 31 in Northern Health (seven percent);
      • 18 in Island Health (four percent);
      • five people from outside of Canada (one percent).

      At the moment, there are 4,150 active cases, which is a decrease of 39 cases since yesterday.

      There’s only one new hospitalized case, with 232 individuals currently in hospitals, and 63 of those patients are in intensive care units (a decrease of 11 people since yesterday).

      Public health is monitoring 7,238 individuals who have been exposed to identified cases.

      Sadly, there are three new COVID-19-related deaths. The total number of fatalities during the pandemic is now at 1,317 people who have died in B.C.

      B.C. has recorded a cumulative total of 74,710 cases, which includes:

      • 44,120 cases in Fraser Health (59 percent);
      • 17,225 in Vancouver Coastal Health (23 percent);
      • 7,055 in Interior Health (nine percent);
      • 4,135 in Northern Health (six percent);
      • 2,027 in Island Health (three percent);
      • 148 people from outside of Canada (less than one percent).

      As of today, 176,015 doses of COVID-19 vaccine have been administered in B.C., and 26,030 of those are second doses.

      B.C. provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry
      Province of British Columbia

      Outbreaks and exposures

      Today, Fraser Health declared an outbreak at Mission Memorial Hospital in the PATH and medicine units after three patients tested positive. The two units have been closed to admissions but the rest of the hospital remains operational. 

      In addition, three healthcare facility outbreaks have been declared over at:

      • Mountain View Manor in Delta;
      • Cariboo Memorial Hospital in Williams Lake, where Interior Health stated there were 14 cases—12 staff and two patients—but no deaths;
      • Sunnybank Retirement Home in Oliver, where Interior Health stated that there were 38 cases—27 residents, 10 staff, and one essential visitor—and six residents died.

      Interior Health provided updates on community clusters.

      Fernie has not had any new cases since the last update on February 12, leaving the total number at 97 cases, with only two active cases.

      Williams Lake has had two new cases since the last update on February 12, increasing the total number to 414 cases. With 375 people having recovered, there remain 39 active cases.

      Northern Health provided an update on the community outbreak at the Pretium Resources Brucejack Mine, located north of Stewart, B.C., which was declared on February 10. There are now 42 confirmed cases, with 12 of those active.

      Flights and stores

      The B.C. Centre for Disease Control added the following flight to its list of potential COVID-19 exposures:

      • February 3: Air Canada/Jazz Flight 8550, Vancouver to Regina, affected rows 16 to 22.

      Sobeys listed two Safeway locations with staff members who tested positive:

      • one employee who last worked on February 9 at the 4655 Lakelse Avenue store in Terrace;
      • one employee who last worked on February 14 at the 1033 Austin Avenue store Coquitlam.

      Loblaw had three stores with staff members who tested positive.

      One employee who tested positive last worked at Alfie's No Frills (1688 West 4th Avenue) in Vancouver on February 7.

      Two stores were Real Canadian Superstore locations, both in Coquitlam:

      • one employee who last worked on February 12 at the 301 Lougheed Highway store;
      • one employee who last worked on February 14 at the 3000 Lougheed Highway store.