British Columbia is reporting 622 new cases of COVID-19 for the entire province with eight additional deaths in that span.
Of the 622 new cases, 35 are linked to the Island Health region.
There are currently 4,941 active cases in British Columbia, while 9,620 residents remain under active public health monitoring.
Dr. Bonnie Henry says that 286 are in hospital – an increase of 4 since Mar. 17 – with 85 people in critical care as a result of the virus (an increase of two).
Since Wednesday’s numbers, there have been 184 new cases of COVID-19 in the Vancouver Coastal Health region, 317 in the Fraser Health region, 35 in the Island Health region, 30 in the Interior Health region, 54 in the Northern Health region and two new cases of people who reside outside of Canada.
There were eight additional deaths related to the virus on Friday. This brings the provincial death total over the course of the pandemic to 1,419.
Also as of Thursday, the total number of cases in British Columbia over the course of the pandemic has reached 90,049.
As far as variants go, there have been 136 new confirmed COVID-19 cases that are variants of concern in our province, for a total of 1,132 cases. Of the total variant cases, 143 are active and the remaining people have recovered. This includes 1,040 cases of the B.1.1.7 (U.K.) variant, 41 cases of the B.1.351 (South Africa) variant and 51 cases of the P.1 (Brazil) variant.
Health officials also said, to date, 465,584 doses of COVID-19 vaccine have been administered in the province, 87,120 of which are second doses.
Vaccine appointment bookings are open for people over 81 today and for people 80 and older tomorrow, along with Indigenous peoples over 65.
“On our current age-based trajectory, everyone who is eligible for a vaccine will have access to a vaccine before July 1, 2021. This is encouraging news for all of us,” said Dr. Henry and Health Minister Adrian Dix in a joint statement.
Starting on Saturday, March 20, people who are 79 or older can start to book their appointments, with further groups added throughout the week. Check the BC Centre for Disease Control (BCCDC) website for further details.
According to the latest data provided by Island Health, there are currently 193 active cases on Vancouver Island.
Of the active cases, 68 are on southern Vancouver Island, 92 on central Vancouver Island and 33 on northern Vancouver Island.
Southern Vancouver Island includes the Greater Victoria region, Southern Gulf Islands and the Port Renfrew area.
Central Vancouver Island includes the Cowichan Valley, Duncan, Nanaimo, Parksville, Port Alberni and Tofino areas.
Northern Vancouver Island goes from the Comox Valley to Port Hardy but also includes surrounding areas like Alert Bay and Sointula.
Over the course of the pandemic, the Island Health region has reported 2,792 cases.
More COVID-19 information
If there is a confirmed COVID-19 case in a school, public health contacts affected school community members directly. Regional health authorities also post-school notifications on their websites, providing the date and type of notification (outbreak, cluster or exposure) for impacted schools.
The Island Health school site can be found here.
Provincial mental health and anxiety support can be found at www.bouncebackbc.ca
Island Health’s COVID-19 data breaks down North, Central and South Island case counts and lists the number of days since any new lab-diagnosed cases. You can find the data here along with any public exposures.
According to data collected by Johns Hopkins University and Medicine, the number of confirmed COVID-19 cases worldwide is more than 121.5 million. More than 2.68 million deaths have been recorded.