625 new COVID-19 cases and 8 more deaths in B.C.

PROVINCIAL Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry and Health Minister Adrian Dix on Wednesday announced 625 new cases of COVID-19, including two epi-linked cases, for a total of 55,254 cases in British Columbia.

There have been eight new COVID-19-related deaths, and the total number of deaths now stands at 962 in the province.

There are 6,343 active cases of COVID-19 in B.C. There are 381 individuals currently hospitalized with COVID-19, 78 of whom are in intensive care. The remaining people with COVID-19 are recovering at home in self-isolation.

Currently, 8,719 people are under active public health monitoring as a result of identified exposure to known cases, and a further 46,728 people who tested positive have recovered.

There have been 178 new cases of COVID-19 in the Vancouver Coastal Health region, 305 new cases in the Fraser Health region, 28 in the Island Health region, 71 in the Interior Health region, 43 in the Northern Health region and no new cases of people who reside outside of Canada.

There have been two new health-care facility outbreaks at Chilliwack General Hospital and Sunnybank Retirement Home. The outbreaks at Crofton Manor and CareLife Fleetwood are now over.

Henry and Dix said: “To date, 33,665 people have received a COVID-19 vaccine in B.C. Our focus is to ensure we safely deliver the vaccines as quickly as possible to communities across the province, using all available supply.”

They added: “This time of year can be a difficult time for many people, and it is compounded by the challenges that come with COVID-19. During these times, taking care of our mental health and well-being is part of how we take care of ourselves and our community.

“Let’s remember that no matter how dark the days may be, we are all in this storm together and you are not alone: support is available, if you need it.

“While the number of new cases and those with serious illness is higher than any of us want, there is light ahead, and with each day that we do our part and more people get immunized, that light gets brighter.

“No one is immune to this virus, but everyone can make a difference. Connection is important to all of us, so reach out to someone who may be struggling and show them you care.

“Our individual experiences may be unique, but we are in this together. By showing kindness and compassion to those around us, it will help all of us get to the brighter days ahead.”