14 more lives lost to COVID-19 in B.C., as 407 new cases confirmed

·2 min read

B.C. health officials announced 407 new cases of COVID-19 and 14 more deaths on Tuesday.

In a written statement, Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry and Health Minister Adrian Dix put the number of hospitalized patients at 313 people, 71 of whom are in intensive care.

A total of 1,168 people in B.C. have lost their lives due to COVID-19 since the pandemic began.

There are currently 4,260 active cases of coronavirus in the province, with public health monitoring 6,450 people across B.C. who are in self-isolation due to COVID-19 exposure. More than 58,352 people who tested positive have recovered.

So far, 122,359 doses of a COVID-19 vaccine have been administered in B.C., 4,105 of which are second doses.

B.C. recorded no new outbreaks in health-care facilities as of Tuesday. The outbreak at the German Canadian Benevolent Society Home has been declared over.

In their statement, Henry and Dix reiterated Monday's warning that new daily cases are still too high.

"The number of new daily cases of COVID-19 is much higher than we want it to be. We are asking for everyone's help to bend our curve back down. This is especially critical with the presence of variant viruses in our province," they said.

"For the many who have been doing your part, you may be asking, 'What more can I do?' Be the voice of support and encouragement for those who may be wavering in their resolve."

Henry on Monday urged people living in B.C. to stay home, stop travelling and resist social interactions outside the household as case numbers plateau around an average of 500 a day. She said high numbers combined with the shortage of vaccine and the presence of more infectious variants leaves the province at a critical point.

"We are at a precipice. The virus continues to circulate in our communities. We are at the threshold of where we were in late October and November when cases started escalating," she said.

"Over the next two weeks, I believe we can bend our curve. Not just plateau, but bend it back down ... More than you've ever done before, stay home, stop social interactions."

At the national level, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said Tuesday new pandemic measures for travel are coming and any Canadians who have travel plans should cancel them. Trudeau said the federal government is working "carefully and diligently" on new measures and will have more to say in the coming days.

Canada has had a ban on non-essential travel into the country by anyone who isn't a citizen or permanent resident since March.