COVID-19 update: 5 more deaths as B.C. adds 774 new cases

A woman wears a protective face covering to help prevent the spread of COVID-19 as she bikes past the emergency entrance of Vancouver General Hospital in Vancouver, B.C., Friday, April 9, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward

B.C.'s Ministry of Health announced 774 more COVID-19 infections on Thursday, as well as five related deaths.

The latest numbers bring B.C.'s seven-day rolling average for new cases to 669, down slightly from the previous day.

There are currently 5,594 active cases of COVID-19 in B.C., a total that includes 262 people who are hospitalized with the disease. There are 130 people in intensive care units.

Since the pandemic began, there have been 172,338 confirmed coronavirus cases in B.C. and 1,847 people have died.

Most of the latest infections were found in the Interior Health and Fraser Health regions, which recorded 253 and 233 new cases, respectively.

Notably, though the regions' new caseloads have been similar in recent weeks, Fraser Health has more than double the population of Interior Health, meaning far fewer people are contracting the coronavirus in the Fraser Health region on a per-capita basis.

Elsewhere, Vancouver Coastal Health saw 123 new infections, Northern Health saw 98 and Island Health recorded 65. Two of the new cases announced Thursday were found in people who normally reside outside Canada.

Of the five deaths announced Thursday, three were in Fraser Health, one in Island Health and one in Northern Health.

For weeks, health officials have described B.C.'s fourth wave of COVID-19 cases as a "pandemic of the unvaccinated."

As of Thursday, 85.3 per cent of eligible British Columbians ages 12 and older in the province have received a first dose of a COVID-19 vaccine, and 77.8 per cent of that age group has received both shots.

Though unvaccinated people represent a relatively small portion of the province's total population, they continue to account for the majority of new infections and hospitalizations.

Of the 4,694 cases recorded in B.C. from Sept. 1 to 7, unvaccinated people accounted for 70.2 per cent of them, according to the health ministry.

During the same period, the province recorded 301 cases per 100,000 unvaccinated residents, compared to roughly 85 per 100,000 partially vaccinated residents and just 26 per 100,000 fully vaccinated residents.

The per-100,000 figures are adjusted for age, according to the ministry.

Hospitalizations and intensive care admissions for COVID-19 in B.C. follow a similar pattern. Earlier in the day Thursday, Health Minister Adrian Dix shared a breakdown of ICU cases by age and vaccination status, saying that of the 130 people currently in intensive care with the coronavirus, 111 of them are unvaccinated. 

Everyone who is under age 50 and is in intensive care with COVID-19 in B.C. is unvaccinated, Dix said.