Home Health Island Health COVID: Vancouver Island has bent the curve well in first year

COVID: Vancouver Island has bent the curve well in first year

In Island Health at January 21: total 1,385 cases to date, with 212 active, 14 in hospital (6 in ICU), and 9 active school exposures. | Vaccinations: 2,556 in the last 24 hrs.

Friday January 22, 2021 | VICTORIA, BC

by Mary P Brooke, B.Sc. editor | Island Social Trends

One year ago the first case of COVID-19 in North America was announced out of Washington State. Four days later BC had its first case in Vancouver. Then the COVID pandemic (officially declared in BC on March 17, 2020) rolled out its fury on the world — we’re at one year and counting.

Here on Vancouver Island, overall we’ve bent the curve pretty well — remarkably so in the first wave (March-April of 2020) and again to some extent in just the last two weeks (amidst overall higher numbers, however).

Case counts on the island are generally the lowest across the health regions of BC each day and each week. With some case-count peaks in mid-November and now some in mid-January, Vancouver Islanders have otherwise managed the contain the spread of COVID-19 pretty well.

Dr Bonnie Henry, January 11 2021
Provincial Health Officer Dr Bonnie Henry during COVID media availability, January 11, 2021.

A significant presentation will be made today January 22 about a full immunization strategy for BC, led by Premier John Horgan along with Health Minister Adrian Dix, Provincial Health Officer Dr Bonnie Henry, and Dr Penny Ballem. That’s at 10:30 am on the usual livestream portals (see Island Social Trends events page for links).

Today’s COVID immunization announcement will be the 166th COVID presentation by Dr Henry and Adrian Dix since the start of the pandemic.

Things have been changing frequently and rapidly during the pandemic. Today’s presentation will aim to set a course for the spring and perhaps summer-to-fall of 2021.


As for now, here are the January 21 COVID stats for Vancouver Island (Island Health):

Total cases: 1,385 during the pandemic to date, with 212 currently active.

Vancouver Island, COVID, January 21 2021
COVID-19 case dashboard for Vancouver Island at January 21, 2021 [BC CDC]

Regional distribution: At present, most of the active cases are in central Vancouver Island (157), with 22 in the north and 22 in the south. In total during the pandemic there have been 1,371 cases in Island Health, with again most in the central area (693), then 408 in the south and 270 in the north.

Island Health, regions, January 21 2021
COVID cases in Island Health by region at January 21, 2021. [Island Health]

By age: On Thursday January 21 there were 47 new cases (a bit on the high side for the island), with five of those in children under the age of 10 and another five in youth ages 10 to 19. The highest age bracket for new cases was among people in their 20s (18 new cases), with five new cases for people in their 30s and seven new cases in the 40s. No cases in elders age 80+ all week.

COVID, Island Health, by age, January 21 2021
Distribution of COVID-19 cases by age on Vancouver Island at January 21, 2021 (one year since the first case in North America). [BC CDC]

Recoveries and deaths: In Island Health 1,146 people have recovered after testing positive for COVID-19, while 17 people have died due to COVID-19 in the past year.

School exposures: Currently nine schools on Vancouver Island have COVID exposures, including one in SD62 on the west shore and one at a private school in Oak Bay.

School name Exposure eventDate 
Royal Bay Secondary School
3500 Ryder Hesjedal Way
Victoria, BC
ExposureJanuary 15, 2021
Chemainus Secondary School
9947 Daniel St.
Chemainus, BC
ExposureJanuary 4, 2021
St. Michaels University School (*Junior School) 
820 Victoria Ave
Victoria, BC
ExposureJanuary 5 & 6, 2021
NIDES/ Navigation  SD71 Distance Education
2505 Smith Road
Courtenay, BC
ExposureJanuary 4, 5 & 6, 2021
Duncan Christian School
495 Beech Ave
Duncan, BC
ClusterJanuary 6, 7, 8, 12, 13, 14 & 15 2021
Quamichan Middle School
2515 Beverly St
Duncan, BC
ExposureJanuary 4 & 5, 2021
Cowichan Secondary School
2652 James St
Duncan, BC
ExposureJanuary 5, 6 & 7, 2021
Miracle Beach Elementary School
(on school bus route)
8763 Paulsen Rd
Black Creek, BC
ExposureJanuary 4, 5, 6, 7 & 8, 2021
Alexander Elementary School
2471 Beverly Street
Duncan, BC
ExposureJanuary 13, 14, 15, 2021
School exposures on Vancouver Island as at January 21, 2021 [Island Health]

Hospitalizations: There are 14 people in hospital in Island Health, with six of those patients in intensive care. To date, in total there have been 80 hospitalizations in Island Health due to COVID.

Vaccinations: To date on Vancouver Island there have been 18,474 vaccine doses administered (Pfizer and Moderna), with 2,556 of those done in the 24 hours between Wednesday and Thursday.

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No COVID cases at Ayre Manor in Sooke (January 13, 2021)

COVID exposure at St Michael’s University School – junior campus (January 15, 2021)

COVID exposure at Royal Bay Secondary School in Colwood (January 18, 2021)