FILE - Specimens to be tested for COVID-19 are seen at LifeLabs after being logged upon receipt at the company's lab, in Surrey, B.C., on Thursday, March 26, 2020. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck)

Health officials announced 27 more cases of COVID-19 in the Vancouver Island region in their final update of the week on Friday.

The new infections bring the total number of cases in the Island Health region to 1,080 since the pandemic began, according to Island Health.

There are currently 164 active cases in Island Health, including 41 active cases in the South Island, 96 in the Central Island and 27 in the North Island.

Eight people are currently in hospital with COVID-19 on Vancouver Island and two people are in critical care, according to the BC Centre for Disease Control.

Twelve people have died in the region since the pandemic began and 900 people are now considered fully recovered.

Across the province, health officials identified 617 new cases of COVID-19 and 18 more deaths Friday.

There have been 56,632 cases of the coronavirus and 988 deaths in B.C. since the pandemic began.

More than 46,000 British Columbians have now received the COVID-19 vaccine, health officials said in a statement Friday.

“Our focus is to ensure we safely deliver the vaccines as quickly as possible to communities across the province, using all available supply,” said Health Minister Adrian Dix and provincial health officer D. Bonnie Henry.

There were no new health-care facility outbreaks reported on Vancouver Island or anywhere in the province Friday.

“Long-term care outbreaks have been at the forefront of our minds and our hearts since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic,” Dix and Henry said. “Each day, more of our seniors and elders who live in these homes, as well as the people who care for them, are protected with the vaccine.”

The health officials continue to ask British Columbians to avoid non-essential travel outside their communities.

“Most British Columbians have been doing their part, and we know it is frustrating when a few people put so many others at risk,” they said. “Despite this, it is important to know your sustained efforts are saving lives. It will get us that much closer to the days without COVID-19.