What you need to know about COVID-19 in B.C. for Feb. 11
Officials announced 449 new cases and 9 more deaths in Thursday's update
- Another 449 cases and nine more deaths were confirmed on Thursday.
- There are now 224 patients in hospital with the disease, including 63 in intensive care.
- There are 4,317 active cases across B.C.
- A total of 1,278 people have died out of 72,305 confirmed cases in B.C.
- 159,887 doses of COVID-19 vaccine have been administered, including 15,684 second doses.
- An outbreak has been declared at the Brucejack Gold Mine in northern B.C.
As health officials announced another 449 confirmed cases of COVID-19 and nine more deaths on Thursday, they also recognized the heavy toll that B.C.'s other public health emergency continues to take.
Last year was the province's deadliest ever for drug overdose deaths, with 1,716 lives lost.
"COVID-19 has shed further light on the inequalities that are all too pervasive in our society," Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry and Health Minister Adrian Dix said in a written statement.
"To the parents, friends, partners and communities who have lost loved ones, we offer our condolences. We remain committed to supporting people who use drugs and are doing everything we can to address the dual health crises affecting our province."
Thursday's update put the total number of patients in hospital with COVID-19 at the lowest level since Nov. 19, with 224 hospitalized including 63 in intensive care. There are now 4,317 active cases of coronavirus across the province.
To date, 1,278 people have died out of 72,305 confirmed cases in B.C. A total of 159,887 doses of COVID-19 vaccine have been administered, including 15,684 second doses.
Warnings for the long weekend
Meanwhile, health officials have spent most of this week pleading with British Columbians to stay local this Family Day weekend, and to obey public health orders forbidding social gatherings and events.
"This weekend is the weekend to stay home — to show your family and friends you care by not giving COVID-19 the opportunity to spread," Henry and Dix said on Wednesday.
"By choosing small and safe for you and everyone around you, we can slow the virus and keep our positive momentum going."
Brucejack mine outbreak
On Thursday, Northern Health declared an outbreak at the Brucejack Gold Mine, located 65 kilometres north of Stewart, B.C., with a total of 14 cases detected.
The mine has implemented travel restrictions and increased testing protocols. None of the affected workers have severe symptoms.
- Premier John Horgan says concerns about spreading COVID-19 as people from British Columbia and Washington state meet in Peace Arch Park should be directed at the federal government.
- In Vancouver's Chinatown neighbourhood, the retail vacancy rate has risen to more than 17 per cent during the pandemic as tourism business dries up.
- Workers at a Duncan denture clinic say they are worried about a neighbouring business flouting COVID rules, despite repeated action from the city, WorkSafeBC, the local health authority and police.
- A new study is investigating how the immune systems of residents and elderly staff in long-term care facilities respond to COVID-19 infection, now that vaccinations in Canadian long-term care homes are well underway.
What's happening elsewhere in Canada
As of 6 p.m. Wednesday, Canada had reported 813,982 cases of COVID-19, with 38,242 cases considered active.
A total of 21,004 people have died.
What are the symptoms of COVID-19?
Common symptoms include:
- Shortness of breath.
- Loss of taste or smell.
But more serious symptoms can develop, including difficulty breathing and pneumonia.
What should I do if I feel sick?
Use the B.C. Centre for Disease Control's COVID-19 self-assessment tool. Testing is recommended for anyone with symptoms of cold or flu, even if they're mild. People with severe difficulty breathing, severe chest pain, difficulty waking up or other extreme symptoms should call 911.
What can I do to protect myself?
- Wash your hands frequently and thoroughly. Keep them clean.
- Keep at least two metres away from people outside your bubble. Keep your distance from people who are sick.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth.
- Wear a mask in indoor public spaces.
- Be aware of evolving travel advisories to different regions.
More detailed information on the outbreak is available on the federal government's website.