What you need to know about COVID-19 in B.C. for Jan. 25

·3 min read

THE LATEST:

  • B.C. recorded 1,344 new cases of COVID-19 and 26 deaths over a three-day period.

  • There are currently 4,392 active cases of the coronavirus in B.C.

  • 328 people are in hospital, with 68 in the ICU.

  • B.C. has detected six cases of the variant from the U.K. and three cases from South Africa.

  • The province. will not be receiving new doses of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine next week.

  • Second doses of the vaccine will now be administered 42 days after the first, instead of 35, in order to vaccinate as many vulnerable people as possible.

  • Eleven outbreaks in long-term care homes have been declared over.

  • Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry is urging people in B.C. to stay home, saying cases have plateaued but that possible resurgence is very concerning.

B.C. has recorded 1,344 new cases of COVID-19 and 26 deaths over a three-day period.

At a Monday news conference, Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry urged B.C. residents to stay home, saying COVID numbers have plateaued at an average of 500 cases a day.

There are 4,392 active cases of coronavirus in the province, with 328 people in hospital, 68 of whom are in intensive care.

Henry said that over the weekend the province received further updates on future shipments of vaccinations — and that B.C. will not be receiving new doses of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccines over the next two weeks.

As a result of the shortage, second doses of the vaccine will be delayed to Day 42, rather than 35 in order to provide protection to a greater number of people.

B.C. identifies more cases of variants

In a Friday press release, health authorities quietly updated the number of variant cases of coronavirus detected in the province, confirming six cases of the variant first reported in the U.K. and three cases of the variant from South Africa.

Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry said all cases of the variant from the U.K. are travel-related, but none of the variants first detected in South Africa have been linked to travel.

"Those are concerning. If we start to see rapid increase again, there's potential for these variants to [take hold], so this is just a way of saying we all have to be really careful right now," she said.

B.C. laboratories are working on fast-tracking how they test for new, more infectious coronavirus mutations, so that the province's recent success in flattening its pandemic curve is not quickly undone.

Long-term care report

The province is expected to reveal the findings of an independent third-party report on the impact of COVID-19 on long-term care facilities in B.C.

The full report, completed by Ernst & Young, is to be released Monday, according to B.C. Health Minister Adrian Dix.

Dix said the report, which was commissioned in the summer, will show how the government can better service these facilities.

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What's happening elsewhere in Canada

As of 7 p.m. PT on Sunday, Canada had reported 747,383 cases of COVID-19, and 19,094 total deaths.

A total of 63,668 cases are considered active.

What are the symptoms of COVID-19?

Common symptoms include:

  • Fever.

  • Cough.

  • Tiredness.

  • Shortness of breath.

  • Loss of taste or smell.

  • Headache.

But more serious symptoms can develop, including difficulty breathing and pneumonia.

What should I do if I feel sick?

Use the B.C. Centre for Disease Control's COVID-19 self-assessment tool. Testing is recommended for anyone with symptoms of cold or flu, even if they're mild. People with severe difficulty breathing, severe chest pain, difficulty waking up or other extreme symptoms should call 911.

What can I do to protect myself?

  • Wash your hands frequently and thoroughly. Keep them clean.

  • Keep your distance from people who are sick.

  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth.

  • Wear a mask in indoor public spaces.

More detailed information on the outbreak is available on the federal government's website.