Dr. Bonnie Henry B.C.’s provincial health officer, updates the COVID-19 situation at the B.C. legislature, April 29, 2021. (B.C. government)

Dr. Bonnie Henry B.C.’s provincial health officer, updates the COVID-19 situation at the B.C. legislature, April 29, 2021. (B.C. government)

B.C.’s COVID-19 infection, hospitalization decline continues

2,174 new cases identified over weekend, 15 more deaths

B.C.’s COVID-19 daily infection rate declined to below 700 over the weekend, and the number of people in hospital with coronavirus-related conditions fell from more than 500 to 474 by Monday.

B.C. recorded 835 new cases in the 24 hours up to Saturday, 671 up to Sunday and 668 up to Monday, with 176 people in intensive care units. There were 15 COVID-19 related deaths over the three days.

B.C.’s daily cases have been declining since reaching their highest rate in early April at more than 1,200, returning to below 800 last week. Hospitalization, a key indicator that lags behind new cases as more people are infected, rose to more than 500 for the first time in late April, and elective surgeries were cancelled at Lower Mainland hospitals for the first time since they were restored last summer.

Health Minister Adrian Dix said the infection rate and pressure on hospitals are still “way too high,” with surge beds activated in Lower Mainland hospitals to keep up with serious cases. Dix and Henry urged everyone eligible to register and get vaccine as it becomes available, with more than 40 per cent of eligible adults having received at least one dose and vaccine supplies increasing significantly starting this week.

Henry said the vaccine supply will also allow B.C. to deliver second doses more quickly, and research into “mix and match” vaccinations using two different types is being watched carefully, as B.C. approaches having first doses offered to all adults by the end of June.

“As we open up immunization to all adults and we get everyone their first dose, we will be speeding up second doses as well,” Henry said.

Henry said people who have had a shot of AstraZeneca vaccine through pharmacies should also register with the main program, but should not attempt to get different vaccine if they receive an invitation in error. There are “glitches” as hundreds of pharmacies add their patient data to a provincial database that collects all immunization records from childhood up, Henry said, and people who have had a first dose should wait for notification that they are due for a second dose.

RELATED: Got a pharmacy shot? Don’t double up on COVID-19 vaccines

RELATED: 5,000 international travellers test positive since February

RELATED: Johnson & Johnson vaccine approved for Canadians 30+


@tomfletcherbc
tfletcher@blackpress.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

BC legislatureCoronavirus

Just Posted

This photo of murder victim Paul Prestbakmo was taken on a recent birthday, not far from where he was found with fatal wounds in August 2019. (Cory Brideau photo)
Verdict expected today for youths accused of killing South Surrey mechanic

Paul Prestbakmo was stabbed to death in August 2019

Semiahmoo First Nation archeology manager Don Welsh (left) sifts through shell midden at a Crescent Beach site in August 2019. (File photo)
Semiahmoo First Nation to repatriate 200 ancestors

B.C. grant funding return of remains from Simon Fraser University

The City of Surrey partnered with the Work Zone Safety Alliance last year to remind drivers to slow down in construction zones. (File photo)
White Rock, Surrey motorists asked to slow down in ‘cone zones’

Provincewide campaign encouraging residents to be mindful of construction workers

White Rock RCMP received more than 80 calls for service between Friday and Sunday night (May 14-16, 2021). (Aaron Hinks file photo)
White Rock beachgoers fined for fires, public intoxication

Majority of weekend visitors were well-behaved, police say

Fraser Valley Heritage Rail Society volunteers stand on the train platform in Cloverdale in 2020. A new exhibit about FVHRS and Surrey’s train history opens at the Museum of Surrey June 2. (Photo: Malin Jordan)
New exhibition on Surrey’s train history to open at Museum of Surrey

Separate two-day event welcomes kids June 25-26

An avalanche near Highway 1 in Glacier National Park. Avalanche Canada will benefit from a $10 million grant from the B.C. government. (Photo by Parks Canada)
Avalanche Canada receives $10-million grant from B.C. government

Long sought-after funds to bolster organization’s important work

The top photo is of a real carbine rifle, while the bottom photo is the airsoft rifle seized from a Kelowna man on May 15. (Contributed)
RCMP issue warning: ‘Imitation firearms need to be dealt with responsibly’

A man brandishing his airsoft rifle in public had his weapon seized by Mounties on Saturday

Abbotsford Regional Hospital. (Black Press Media files)
Canada marks 25,000 COVID-19 deaths since the pandemic began

6 in every 10,000 Canadians died of COVID-19 since March 9, 2020

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Staff-Sgt. Svend Nielsen, with the 100 Mile House RCMP. (Melissa Smalley - 100 Mile Free Press)
14-year-old boy killed in serious ATV crash near 100 Mile House

Youth was travelling with a group of peers when the incident occurred last Friday

Relief is coming for B.C.’s struggling tourism sector. (NEWS file photo)
B.C. officials set to announce more support for tourism sector hit hard by pandemic

Non-essential travel is restricted between three regional zones in B.C. until at least May 24

This image released by Universal Pictures shows Nathalie Emmanuel, left, and Vin Diesel in a scene from “F9.” (Giles Keyte/Universal Pictures via AP)
The blockbuster movie is making a comeback this summer

Excitement in the industry is growing again for a return to a big-screen normal

Sicamous RCMP Sgt. Murray McNeil and Cpl. Wade Fisher present seven-year-old Cody Krabbendam of Ranchero with an award for bravery on July 22, 2020. (Contributed)
7-year old Shuswap boy receives medal of bravery for rescuing child at beach

Last summer Cody Krabbendam jumped into the lake to save another boy from drowning

Most Read