'We are on track': Vancouver Island adds 9 new COVID-19 cases

British Columbia health officials identified nine new cases of COVID-19 in the Vancouver Island region Monday.

The new cases were among 481 cases found across the province over the weekend.

Health officials have now confirmed 145,530 cases of COVID-19 in B.C. since the pandemic began, including 5,076 cases on Vancouver Island.

Twelve more British Columbians have died of the disease, health officials announced Monday, bringing the province’s pandemic death toll to 1,722.

Eight of those who died over the weekend lived in the Fraser Health region while four lived in the Vancouver Coastal Health region, according to Health Minister Adrian Dix.

There have been 41 deaths in the Vancouver Island region since the pandemic began. 

There are currently 56 active cases of COVID-19 in the Vancouver Island region, including three people in hospital, but no one in critical care.

Island Health identified the locations of 29 active cases Monday, including 19 in the South Island, eight in the Central Island and two in the North Island.

Approximately 74 per cent of adults in B.C. have now received a first dose of COVID-19 vaccine, while 72 per cent of people aged 12 and older have been vaccinated.

“This includes 39 per cent of youth, 12 to 17, who have received a single dose of COVID-19 vaccine,” said deputy provincial health officer Dr. Réka Gustafson.

The deputy provincial health officer said B.C.’s immunization rates and case numbers are in a good place for the province to move to the next phase of its reopening plan, which is scheduled to begin on June 15 at the earliest.

“We are on track,” Gustafson said. “All of the indicators are in the direction that you want them to be.”