514 new COVID-19 cases and 5 more deaths in B.C.

DR. Bonnie Henry, Provincial Health Officer, and Adrian Dix, Minister of Health, on Friday announced 514 new cases, including six epi-linked cases, of COVID-19 for a total of 66,779 cases in British Columbia.

There have been five new COVID-19-related deaths, for a total of 1,189 deaths in the province.

To date, 129,241 doses of COVID-19 vaccine have been administered in B.C., 4,262 of which are second doses. Immunization data is available on the COVID-19 dashboard at: www.bccdc.ca

Henry and Dix said: “The first dose of COVID-19 vaccines have now been provided to long-term care residents and staff who would like it. While this protection for those who are most vulnerable is an important milestone for all of us, we must continue to remain vigilant.”

There are 4,557 active cases of COVID-19 in the province. There are 292 individuals currently hospitalized with COVID-19, 74 of whom are in intensive care. The remaining people are recovering at home in self-isolation.

Currently, 7,242 people are under active public health monitoring as a result of identified exposure to known cases and a further 59,551 people who tested positive have recovered.

There have been 134 new cases of COVID-19 in the Vancouver Coastal Health region, 223 new cases in the Fraser Health region, 29 in the Island Health region, 71 in the Interior Health region, 57 in the Northern Health region and no new cases of people who reside outside of Canada.

There has been one new health-care facility outbreak at Holy Family Hospital, and the outbreaks at Little Mountain Place, Mayfair Senior Living Care and Morgan Place Care are now over.

Henry and Dix added: “January has proven to be a difficult month for all of us. As our new cases of COVID-19 remain high, vaccine supply has been impacted and we all feel the fatigue of this pandemic.

“But we have to remember that this month has also brought more light. Each day, more of the people who are most vulnerable to severe illness are now protected. With that, we have seen a notable decline in the outbreaks in long-term care.

“Today, new international travel restrictions were announced by the federal government to further limit the potential for COVID-19 to spread in our communities. This is a welcome addition and another layer of protection for all of us.

“Any travel beyond your local community, unless it is absolutely essential for work or medical care, is strongly discouraged right now. This applies to everyone in British Columbia and anyone considering a visit to our province. Now is not the time to travel.

“We all need to hold off on our travel plans until we can be sure we won’t be bringing the virus with us or bringing it back to our families and communities.

“Our layers of protection are a combination of the provincial public health restrictions, our personal actions and precautions, and supporting each other to do the right thing – with no exception. This combined effort is what will push our curve down.

“By working together while staying part and always following the measures we have in place, we are able to keep our restaurants open, our ski hills open, our kids going to school and to keep our health-care system working.

“This time is about each of us choosing to do all we can. This is what allows us to keep as much as is safe open and also slow the spread of COVID-19. Staying apart, small and local. That’s the path we need to stay on right now.”