Metrics tracking the COVID-19 pandemic in B.C. continue to trend in the right direction.
The number of COVID-19 patients in B.C. hospitals has fallen in each of the past 30 government data updates, and is now 254 – 17 fewer than yesterday. Of those, 48 are in intensive care units (ICUs), which is one fewer than yesterday.
No new COVID-19 deaths were reported for the past 24 hours, leaving the province's COVID-19 death toll at 2,974.
The government's system for tabulating deaths, however, has for a while meant that few deaths are reported on Tuesdays. The last time B.C. reported no new deaths in a day was last Tuesday. The Tuesday before that had one death, in between 11 deaths on that Monday, and 14 on the Wednesday. There have been 107 COVID-19 deaths so far in March, for an average of 4.86 per day.
Other good news is that there were no new outbreaks at seniors' homes or health-care settings.
Outbreaks at Ponderosa Lodge in Kamloops, Berwick House Gordon Head in Victoria and Luther Court in Victoria have been declared over. That leaves five facilities with ongoing outbreaks, down from 31 health-care setting outbreaks one month ago.
Officials detected 259 new infections in the past 24 hours.
Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry, however, has told vaccinated people with mild symptoms to not get tested so as to free up tests for those who are more vulnerable. As a result she has called the daily case counts "not accurate."
The B.C. government on Feb. 10 stopped providing data for active infections, and the number of those considered to have recovered from COVID-19 for that very reason.
It does, however, still provide data for new known infections, and the cumulative total for infections is now 354,343.
Vaccinations help limit the spread of the disease that spawned a global pandemic, and help reduce the seriousness of infections that do occur.
The vast majority of British Columbians are already vaccinated.
In total, 4,525,621 eligible B.C. residents have had at least one dose of vaccine, while 4,339,973 are considered fully vaccinated with two doses, and 2,646,447 have had three doses.
Recent Statistics Canada 2021 census data counted 5,000,879 residents in B.C.
Glacier Media's calculation therefore is that nearly 90.5 per cent of B.C.'s total population has had at least one dose of vaccine, and nearly 86.8 per cent of the province's total population has had two doses. More than 52.9 per cent have had their third, or booster doses. •
More to come ...