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B.C. COVID-19 cases, hospitalizations, deaths rise: CDC

With fall fast approaching, new numbers from the BC Centre for Disease Control (BCCDC) show COVID-19 is slowly tightening its grip on the province.

The number of cases, hospitalizations, and deaths reported have all gone up, according to the most recent report from the organization, released on Sept. 21.

It shows there are nearly 180 people across the province in the hospital with the virus.

“The number of critical care admissions per week remained stable in the last 4 epi-weeks, ranging between 17 and 22 critical care admissions per week. There were 22 critical care admissions reported most recently in epi-week 37,” the BCCDC said on its website.

The number of deaths per week went up from 10 in late August, to 22 by this report. COVID-positive deaths are also up from March to the week ending on Sept. 16, the CDC says.

“Forty-six per cent of deaths with any positive COVID-19 lab test within 30 days of the date of death were reported to have COVID-19 as the underlying cause of death.”

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Case numbers have gone from 366 a couple of weeks ago to 628.

“In the last 4 epi-weeks, infection episodes continue to increase notably among those 60 years and older.”

There are two main strains that are circulating, the CDC notes. EG.5 is the predominant strain, along with XBB.1.16.

“Omicron variant BA.2.86 has recently been flagged as a variant under monitoring to closely follow. To date, only 3 samples of BA.2.86 have been detected in BC.

“The BCCDC says COVID-19 is being detected in wastewater plants in Metro Vancouver, Victoria, Comox, and Kelowna and the sample size continues to rise.

“At other plants under surveillance in the province, SARS-CoV-2 have stabilized or slightly decreased.”

Facility outbreaks have remained either low or stable. “There were 6 outbreaks reported in acute care facilities and 2 outbreaks reported in long-term care facilities.”

Canada’s chief medical officer has been adamant in her messaging, encouraging people to get the updated COVID-19 vaccine when it’s released to the public, which is expected sometime in October.

Meanwhile, the provincial government is expected to release details of its fall vaccine campaign next week when it will give people the option to get the flu and COVID shots at the same time.

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