Dr. Bonnie Henry, B.C.’s provincial health officer, and Adrian Dix, Minister of Health, have issued the following joint statement regarding updates on the COVID-19 response in British Columbia:

“Today, we are reporting a total of 445 new cases, including six epi-linked cases, for a total of 72,750 cases in British Columbia.

“There are 4,347 active cases of COVID-19 in the province. There are 226 individuals currently hospitalized with COVID-19, 61 of whom are in intensive care. The remaining people are recovering at home in self-isolation.

“Currently, 7,035 people are under active public health monitoring as a result of identified exposure to known cases and a further 67,008 people who tested positive have recovered.

“Since we last reported, we have had 135 new cases of COVID-19 in the Vancouver Coastal Health region, 218 new cases in the Fraser Health region, 15 in the Island Health region, 44 in the Interior Health region, 30 in the Northern Health region and three new cases of people who reside outside of Canada.

“To date, 162,982 doses of COVID-19 vaccine have been administered in B.C., 17,562 of which are second doses. Immunization data is available on the COVID-19 dashboard at: www.bccdc.ca

“Starting next week, deliveries of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine will resume, significantly increasing our ability to continue with our provincewide immunization program. These first-phase immunizations focus on those who are highest risk of severe illness and death, and front-line health-care workers.

“There have been 10 new COVID-19 related deaths, for a total of 1,288 deaths in British Columbia. We offer our condolences to everyone who has lost loved ones to COVID-19.

“There have been no new health-care facility outbreaks. The outbreaks at Jubilee Lodge, University Hospital of Northern British Columbia and Royal Columbian Hospital are over.

“There has been a new community outbreak at the Bruce Jack Mine.

“We have seen a notable decrease in transmission and outbreaks in our long-term care and assisted-living facilities, which is clear evidence of the effectiveness of our vaccines. As new cases continue to decrease in long-term care, all of us must also work to reduce transmission in our communities.

“We are trending in the right direction – pushing our curve down – but we need to ensure our success sticks. This means staying the course with our layers of protection and continuing to follow all of the public health restrictions and guidance.

“This weekend, we need to pay particular attention to ensure the progress we have made is not wasted. This is even more important as variants of concern circulate in our communities.

“To date, we have had 29 confirmed COVID-19 cases of the B.1.17 (UK) and 17 of the B.1.351 (South African) variants.

“Doing our bit to break the chains of transmission in our communities buys us the time we need to get our immunization program fully up and running again, and gives us the protective buffer we need for these variants of concern.

“Let’s continue to keep our families and communities safe by enjoying this Family Day weekend with fewer faces and fewer places.”