COVID-19 ON B.C. An overview of the pandemic.


The beginning of April has brought a sad milestone for B.C. The province recorded the highest single-day number of new cases of COVID-19 to date, with 1,013 confirmed cases and three more deaths. Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry and Health Minister Adrian Dix placed the number of hospitalized patients at 301 people, 80 of whom are in intensive care.

In light of the continuing wave in cases, both advise everyone to remain home this long weekend. “Right now, no one should be travelling for leisure or vacation outside of your local communities or regions,” they said to the press. As the functionaries explained to the media, the risk is too big, meaning “Any of our usual travel and holiday weekend gatherings need to be put on hold this year,” 

The majority of ferry reservations out of Horseshoe Bay and Tsawwassen terminal sold out Thursday morning. However, it’s unclear how many of those are being used by essential workers.

Henry had initially announced some easing of restrictions for religious gatherings in time for Easter but had to backtrack on those plans after the increment in new contagions. According to the recent declarations, until April 19, all indoor religious gatherings and worship services are banned.

This happens at a moment where the new variants of COVID-19 are taking a toll on the younger. “It’s still, of course, is riskier the older you are,” Henry said at a press conference. The representative also stated that as long as we protect more and more older people, we also see risk in younger people. Younger people end up in the ICU and need ICU care for a more extended period, stated the official representative. 

While infections have decreased in Canadians of 80 and over since, cases are now highest among young adults aged 20 to 39, according to the latest national public health modelling released on March 26

The rise of new and more transmissible variants plus vaccination programs focusing on the elderly and coronavirus fatigue could be accelerating the spread among the younger group, experts say. Theresa Tam, Canada’s Chief Health Officer, commented on the subject, accentuating that severe or prolonged illness can occur at any age and mentioning the new variants’ increasing severity. 

On a brighter note, Pfizer Inc and BioNTech’s COVID-19 announced their vaccine is around 91% effective at preventing the disease, according to new studies. The statement cites recent data from a trial including participants inoculated for up to six months. 

Even better news: the shot was also declared 100% effective in preventing illness among trial participants in South Africa, where a new variant called B1351 is dominant. However, the number of participants for this specific test was relatively small at 800, so results should be viewed with healthy skepticism. 

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