B.C. reports 1,068 new COVID-19 cases, 73 identified on Vancouver Island

B.C. reports 1,068 new COVID-19 cases, 73 identified on Vancouver Island

B.C. health officials reported 1,068 cases of COVID-19 and three additional deaths since their last update on Monday.

The number of confirmed cases in B.C. climbs to 105,988 while the province’s death toll now stands at 1,489. Of the three new deaths, two were in the Vancouver Coastal Health region and one was in Island Health.

Of the new cases, 352 were recorded in Vancouver Coastal Health, 492 were in Fraser Health, 73 in Island Health, 106 in Interior Health, and 43 in Northern Health.

There are currently 328 people in hospital — 96 of whom are in intensive care — while 912,056 doses of vaccine have been administered province-wide.

As of Tuesday, people 71 and over and Indigenous peoples 18 and over, as well as extremely clinically vulnerable people, are able to register for their vaccination appointments online thanks to the province’s new online booking portal.

Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry said the province would be using its available AstraZeneca vaccine supply to advance age groups eligible to get vaccinated.

She also said the Johnson & Johnson vaccine would become available to the province at the end of the month, and once it arrived, health officials would “jump start” the essential worker vaccination program temporarily paused due to rare reports of blood clotting linked to AstraZeneca’s vaccine.

Island Health

There are currently 585 active coronavirus cases on Vancouver Island, according to the latest information available on the BCCDC’s dashboard, which updated today for the first time since April 1.

Seventeen people are hospitalized with COVID-19 on Vancouver Island, with four of those people currently in critical care.

A total of 298 coronavirus cases have been identified on Vancouver Island in the past five days.

Of those, 91 cases were identified in people between 20-29, an age group that is increasingly becoming infected, according to health officials. Forty-eight cases are in people aged 30-39 and 46 cases are in people ages 10-19.

Infections in those between 20-29 have increased 15 per cent since March 29.

Unfortunately, two more people in Island Health have died from the virus in the past five days, bringing the region’s death toll to 31.

Since the onset of the pandemic, there have been 3,682 cases identified and 3,061 recoveries in the Island Health region.

Meanwhile, Island Health reported 463 active cases on Vancouver Island in its latest dashboard update.

Of those active cases, 254 are in the South Island, 182 are in Central Island, and 27 are in the North Island.

Island Health’s data often lags behind the BCCDC’s data due to a “difference in timing of reporting across laboratory and public health data sources.”

Variants of concern

During Tuesday’s update, Dr. Bonnie Henry confirmed an additional 207 cases were variants of concern, driving the total number of variant cases detected in B.C. to 3,766.

All of the new cases except one were identified in the Vancouver Coastal Health region, with the lone case outside of the region being located in Fraser Health.

There are now 266 active variant cases in B.C.

The B.1.1.7 variant — also known as the U.K. variant — continues to be the most common variant recorded in the province, with 2,838 cases identified. There have also been 877 cases of the P.1. (Brazil) variant and 51 cases of the B.1.351 (South Africa) variant identified in B.C.

“The majority of the P.1. that we’re seeing in B.C. are people who reside in the Vancouver Coastal Health region, primarily part of them in the Lower Mainland part of Vancouver, and a good proportion in Whistler,” Henry said on Tuesday, adding that about 20 cases of the P.1 variant have been detected on Vancouver Island.

The Brazilian variant, however, now accounts for 40 per cent of all active variant cases in B.C. and some health experts say the variant likely to result in more serious outcomes in young people, but data is still preliminary.

National landscape

Canada has recorded 1,020,893 cases of COVID-19, with Quebec and Ontario accounting for the majority of reported infections, data on Health Canada’s website shows.

There have been 25,032 cases identified on First Nations reserves throughout Canada, including 2,802 cases on reserves in B.C.

The national death toll currently stands at 23,141.

Globally, more than 132.2 million cases have been reported, according to John Hopkins University’s COVID-19 tracker. The United States has recorded the most infections of any country, with India, Brazil, France and Russia rounding out the top five.

Cases worldwide rose for the sixth consecutive week, with over four million new cases recorded in the last week, according to the World Health Organization.

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