British Columbia

7-day average highest since May as B.C. records 513 new cases of COVID-19

British Columbia announced 513 new cases of COVID-19 and one more death on Thursday, as the seven-day rolling average of new cases in the province rises to its highest level since May 21.

There are 81 people in hospital with the disease, 33 of whom are in intensive care

Pedestrians, some wearing facemasks and some not, cross a busy intersection in Vancouver on Tuesday. (Maggie MacPherson/CBC)

British Columbia announced 513 new cases of COVID-19 and one more death on Thursday, as the seven-day rolling average of new cases in the province rises to its highest level since May 21.

In a written statement, the provincial Ministry of Health said there are currently 3,834 active cases of people infected with the novel coronavirus in B.C.

A total of 81 people are in hospital, with 33 in intensive care.

 

Overall hospitalizations, which typically lag behind spikes and dips in new cases, are up 40 per cent from last Thursday, when 58 people were in hospital with the disease and have doubled from their 2021 low 18 days ago.

The number of patients in intensive care is up by about 57 per cent from 21 a week ago. It is the highest number of ICU patients in B.C. with COVID-19 since June 30.

The provincial death toll from the disease is now 1,779 lives lost out of 154,362 confirmed cases to date.

So far, more than seven million doses of COVID-19 vaccine have been administered, including 3.3 million second doses.

Cases surging 

B.C. has seen a 1,000 per cent increase in cases of COVID-19 in the last five weeks, with the Interior Health region accounting for nearly half of the new daily cases in the province. The one death recorded on Thursday was in B.C.'s Interior.

But numbers are rising in other regions as well.

The breakdown of new cases by region is as follows:

  • 271 new cases in Interior Health, which has 2,199 active cases. 
  • 108 new cases in Fraser Health, which has 750 active cases.
  • 92 new cases in Vancouver Coastal Health, which has 539 active cases.
  • 29 new cases in Island Health, which has 220 active cases.
  • 13 new cases in Northern Health, which has 116 active cases.
  • No new cases of people who reside outside of Canada, a group that has 10 active cases.

 

In an effort to contain the virus, and increase the number of fully vaccinated British Columbians, the province reduced the interval between the first and second doses of the vaccine from seven weeks to 28 days on Monday.

Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry also announced Thursday that workers in assisted living and long-term care would now be required to be vaccinated.

There are currently eight COVID-19 outbreaks in long-term care in the province. All workers would need to be fully vaccinated by Oct. 12. 

"This additional step will add to the safety and protection of everyone working in long-term care," said Health Minister Adrian Dix, as federal authorities also mull similar measures for public servants.

British Columbians aged 12 and over who have not yet been immunized can register in three ways:

People can also be immunized at walk-in clinics throughout the province.

With files from Bridgette Watson

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