Don't get COVID cocky

coronavirus hero

Dr. Bonnie Henry, B.C.'s provincial health officer and Adrian Dix, Minister of Health, have issued the following statement regarding updates on the COVID-19 response in British Columbia:

"Today, we are reporting on three periods: Jan. 22 to 23 we had 527 new cases, Jan. 23 to 24 we had 471 new cases and in the last 24 hours we had a further 346 new cases.

"This results in a total of 1,344 new cases, including three epi-linked cases, for a total of 64,828 cases in British Columbia.

"There are 4,392 active cases of COVID-19 in the province. There are 328 individuals currently hospitalized with COVID-19, 68 of whom are in intensive care. The remaining people with COVID-19 are recovering at home in self-isolation.

"Currently, 6,607 people are under active public health monitoring as a result of identified exposure to known cases and a further 57,831 people who tested positive have recovered.

"Since we last reported, we have had 314 new cases of COVID-19 in the Vancouver Coastal Health region, 618 new cases in the Fraser Health region, 73 in the Island Health region, 234 in the Interior Health region, 104 in the Northern Health region and one new case of a person who resides outside of Canada.

"As part of provincial monitoring of COVID-19, we have confirmed six cases of Multisystem Inflammatory Syndrome in Children (MIS-C) in B.C. since the start of the pandemic. Health-care teams continue to monitor and test all children and teens who have symptoms.

"To date, 119,850 doses of COVID-19 vaccine have been administered in B.C., 3,193 of which are second doses. Immunization data is available on the COVID-19 dashboard: www.bccdc.ca

"As a result of the limited supply of vaccine in the next two weeks, we will be delaying second doses until day 42, until we have assurance that vaccine supply has fully resumed. This is about doing our best to give as many people as possible the protection of a first dose.

"There have been 26 new COVID-19 related deaths, for a total of 1,154 deaths in British Columbia. We offer our condolences to everyone who has lost their loved ones during the COVID-19 pandemic.

"In the last couple of weeks, we have plateaued at about 500 new cases of COVID-19 a day. And, while the number of long-term care outbreaks has slowed, we continue to see new outbreaks in hospitals and in the community.

"This may seem stable to some, but it is a precarious situation for all of us. This shows us that while we are slowing the spread in long-term care, the risks remain high because the virus continues to circulate in our communities.

"We are at the threshold of where we were in November when cases started rapidly escalating, and we need to put a stop to this before more people become severely ill and our health-care system faces even more strain.

"Getting to the brighter days, easing the public health restrictions in our province relies on what we do now. That is why we need your help.

"We need everyone to remember that COVID-19 is still the unwelcome guest in our homes, at work and in our communities, and to take a step back; to stay home and stay away from others, and perhaps do more than what you have done before to slow the spread.

"Fewer cases is where we want to go in B.C., and we need your help to get there. Our goal for the next two weeks is to push the number of new cases in our province down as low as we can go.

"Let's unite in this common goal. We have the tools and the resources to do just that, so let's show each other that we can make this happen."