B.C.’s COVID-19 infection rate continued at a low rate Tuesday, with the former hotspot of Fraser Health’s new infections trending down to the provincial average.
Public health teams reported 56 new confirmed cases Tuesday, with active cases at 1,150, 111 people in hospital and 41 in intensive care. There were no new deaths reported in the 24 hours up to June 22.
B.C. has reached more than one million people vaccinated with two doses, and 4.5 million doses delivered overall, provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry reported from Prince George, where public health authorities are working on vaccine strategies for more remote communities. Overall, 77.7 per cent of adults have had at least one dose, with children aged 12 to 17 catching up quickly.
“Make sure your children are immunized before the summer gets underway,” Henry advised.
Health Minister Adrian Dix said the province is currently expecting more Moderna vaccine supply than Pfizer, the dominant source of vaccine since the program began late last year. Henry emphasized that the two messenger RNA vaccines are interchangeable, and while there is “a little bit of brand shopping” with people expecting the same supplier, the evidence is clear that one of each is as effective in preventing infection and transmission.
Dix said people continue to take their second doses of AstraZeneca vaccine through pharmacies, running about 4,000 per day, down from 6,000 a day since a national health advisory committee shifted its advice that Pfizer and Moderna are “preferred” for second dose.
Dix said B.C. has had success with whole community vaccine clinics, including in Grand Forks over the weekend and 100 Mile House this week. Walk-in clinics have been successful in the former hot spot of Surrey, with vaccination rates there exceeding the provincial average.
Of the 56 new cases, 12 are in the Vancouver Coastal Health region, 18 are in Fraser Health, three are in Island Health, 15 are in the Interior Health region, seven are in the Northern Health region and one is a person who resides outside of Canada.