B.C. sees jump in COVID-19 vaccine bookings and registrations

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VICTORIA — The British Columbia government says the number of people registering for and making appointments for the first dose of a COVID-19 vaccine made a "significant" jump in the first two days of this week.

On Monday, it says the number of daily registrations jumped by almost 175 per cent as 8,909 people registered, while another 7,347 made appointments, compared to 3,896 who made bookings the previous Monday.

Tuesday was busier, with 10,175 new vaccine registrations and 9,486 people booking an appointment, increases of 201 per cent and 124 per cent respectively from the same day last week.

In a news release, the province says there was a particular increase in registrations and booking among people under the age of 40 for their first shots.

The government announced on Monday that people need to be vaccinated to go to a movie, a restaurant, and sporting and other events.

B.C. reported 698 new cases of COVID-19 and one more death on Wednesday, which marked the first day a provincial health order was reinstated requiring people to wear masks in all indoor public spaces.

Health Minister Adrian Dix says he's pleased that people are heeding the call to help slow the spread of COVID-19 by getting vaccinated.

"Getting vaccinated is the most important step we can all take to move out of this pandemic, and the momentum this week is positive news."

By Sept. 13, B.C. residents will be required to show proof of at least one vaccine shot to attend many social and recreational events. By Oct. 24, they will have to be fully vaccinated for at least seven days.

Dr. Penny Ballem, the head of B.C.'s immunization program, says the province has enough vaccine for everyone who is eligible.

The province reported 5,356 active infections on Wednesday. It says 139 people were hospitalized, including 75 in intensive care.

About 35 per cent of the overall active cases were located in the Interior Health region, where Henry has imposed further restrictions to try and limit the spread of COVID-19.

The Health Ministry says there have been two new health-care outbreaks for a total of 13 in assisted living and long-term care as well as one in acute care at White Rock's Peace Arch Hospital.

It says 75.4 per cent of eligible B.C. residents aged 12 and up have been fully vaccinated, while 83.5 per cent have received at least one shot.

The province says people who were not fully vaccinated accounted for 83.3 per cent of overall cases and 85 per cent of hospitalizations between Aug. 10 and 23.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Aug. 25, 2021.

The Canadian Press

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