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B.C. records 26 COVID-19 deaths in past three days

Good news is that the number of active infections has fallen below 5,000 for first time since August 13.
Hospital worker window - getty images - Xavier Lorenzo
A doctor in face mask looks through a window

Along with fall weather, B.C. has been seeing a rise in the number of residents dying from COVID-19. 

Another 26 British Columbians have died from the disease in the past three days, with 26 people in the three days before that. In total, 2,081 British Columbians have lost their lives in this global pandemic. The rate of deaths, however, has been rapidly increasing. Go back a few months, to July 14, and B.C. had gone six days in a row without a COVID-19 death

No region of the province was spared fatalities, as deaths included:
• 10 in Fraser Health;
• five in Interior Health;
• five in Northern Health;
• three in Vancouver Coastal Health; and
• three in Island Health.

The serious infections causing death are largely spurred by unvaccinated individuals. 

Government statistics released today show that between October 8 and October 14, people not fully vaccinated accounted for 68.3% of new COVID-19 cases. Between October 1 and October 14, people not fully vaccinated accounted for 74.6% of COVID-19 hospitalizations.

This is happening despite the overwhelming majority of British Columbians having been vaccinated. 

Across B.C., 89.2% of eligible adults older than 12 have had at least one dose of vaccine, with 83.4% of those eligible people having had two doses, according to the B.C. government.

Of the 4,133,755 B.C. residents who have received one dose of vaccine since mid-December, 2020, nearly 93.5%, or 3,865,096, are fully vaccinated, with two doses.

The B.C. government estimated in July that the province's total population is 5,147,712, so Glacier Media's calculation is that nearly 80.3% of B.C.'s total population has had at least one dose of vaccine, and 75.1% of the province's total population has had two doses.

More evidence that it is the unvaccinated spreading the pandemic is that when adjusted for age, in the week up to October 14, there were 268 people newly infected for each 100,000 unvaccinated British Columbians. In that same time period, there were only 74.2 people newly infected for each 100,000 partially vaccinated British Columbians, and only 29.4 people newly infected for each 100,000 fully vaccinated British Columbians. 

B.C. hospitals, overall, are less occupied than they were pre-pandemic because the provincial government has postponed surgeries. Parts of the province, including the North, where vaccination rates are lower, have seen hospitals be overwhelmed enough to have to transport dozens of patients to the Lower Mainland and Vancouver Island. 

There are 360 COVID-19 patients now in hospitals across the province. Of those, 151 are in intensive care units (ICUs). 

Some good news is that the number of people that the province considers to be actively battling COVID-19 infections has fallen below 5,000 for the first time since August 13 – more than two months ago. The vast majority of those 4,917 people have been told to self-isolate at home. 

In total, 198,278 British Columbians have contracted the disease since the first case was detected in the province in January, 2020.

Of those, more than 96.2%, or 190,918 people, are deemed by the province to have recovered because they have gone more than 10 days after first feeling symptoms, and are therefore considered to be not infectious. 

New cases continue to rack up, with 1,846 new cases in the past three days. That includes 753 new cases on October 16, 650 new cases on October 17, and 443 cases in the past 24 hours. The province also announced some data corrections, whereby two previously reported cases have been removed from the total number of those infected, and one was added. 

The Northern Health region is overwhelmingly the region spurring the most new cases on a per-capita basis.

Glacier Media's broke down the 1,846 new infections by health region, for each 10,000 residents (with total new cases in brackets):
• 4.1 in Fraser Health (737);
• 1.7 in Vancouver Coastal Health (212);
• 4.3 in Interior Health (322);
• 13.5 in Northern Health (406); and
• 2 in Island Health (169).

There were no known new infections in people who normally do not reside outside Canada.

The result by health region, for the 4,917 people fighting active infections, for each 10,000 residents (with total new cases in brackets) is:
• 11.3 in Fraser Health (2,039);
•  5.1 in Vancouver Coastal Health (642);
•  10.5 in Interior Health (777);
•  29.3 in Northern Health (880); and
•  6.1 in Island Health (521).

There are 58 active infections in the province in people who normally reside outside B.C. 

Four new health-care facility outbreaks have been reported, at:
• Queens Park Care Centre in New Westminster;
• Heritage Village in Chilliwack;
• Menno Terrace West in Abbotsford; and
• Amica Lions Gate in West Vancouver.

The outbreak at Joseph Creek Care Village, in Cranbrook, has been declared over.

This adds up to 22 active outbreaks at health-care facilities or seniors' homes. •