Home Health COVID-19 ‘Expect more cases’ comes with get-vaccinated plea from PHO & Dix

‘Expect more cases’ comes with get-vaccinated plea from PHO & Dix

Young adults have been significantly impacted: interruptions in social contact, intrusion upon post-secondary and career goals, and being left til last in the vaccination queue. ~ Dr Henry, August 31, 2021.

Tuesday August 31, 2021 | VICTORIA, BC

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


There will be more COVID cases and hospitalizations in the next month, and the best way to protect yourself is to get vaccinated.

That was the nugget of today’s COVID data modelling message by Provincial Health Officer Dr Bonnie Henry today, as livestreamed and taking media questions.

Dr Bonnie Henry, August 31 2021
Provincial Health Officer Dr Bonnie Henry urges vaccination ahead of back to school, August 31, 2021 in Victoria. [livestream]

Health Minister Adrian Dix today said he hopes that BC will “lead the world in our level of vaccination”.

The hospitalization rate among unvaccinated people in BC is about 17 times higher than if they are fully-vaxxed. Dr Henry showed in the data modelling that unvaccinated people are at much greater risk of infection (age-adjusted), hospitalization, and death. Reduce social contacts and get vaccinated, she reminded.

As of today’s August 31 BC Centre for Disease Control statistics, 84.3% of eligible British Columbians (age 12+) have received one dose, and 76.5% have received two doses. The majority of vaccinations in BC have been done with the PfizerBioNTech product (70.6%), followed by Moderna (24.2%), and then AstraZeneca (5.2%).

Taking precautions:

The fourth wave of COVID-19 pandemic is upon us, with the highly transmissible Delta variant causing nearly all the infections, according to BC Centre for Disease Control (BC CDC) stats.

adrian dix, august 2021
BC Health Minister Adrian Dix boasted that BC’s vaccination record is strong, August 31, 2021 in Victoria. [livestream]

“Avoid large crowds especially with unvaccinated people,” said Dr Henry today (as well as the other measures like hand hygiene, staying home if sick), as latest BC CDC data modelling indicates still a gradually increasing number of new COVID cases & hospitalizations.

Langford Optometry
Langford Optometry is open for longer hours during COVID-19 Phase 2 (to May 31), with longer hours coming at June 1, 2020.

Dr Henry outlined that there has been increased risk for hospitalization in people ages 40-59, with hospitalizations also in people ages 20-40 years. Notably, she pointed out that unvaccinated people in their 40s and 50s have died due to COVID (in contrast to most of the deaths being among the elderly in the first waves of the pandemic).

It’s progress that now Dr Henry is proactively saying that young adults were left to last for vaccination. Before Island Social Trends asked for her views on the BC Immunization Plan having been age-based (descending from elderly, down), she was mute on the impact upon young adults by the way BC has managed the pandemic.

Today Dr Henry went further today, to articulate that the lives of young adults have been significantly impacted, including interruptions in social contact, intrusion upon post-secondary and career goals, and then being left til last in the vaccination queue.

Third dose:

BC is looking at giving a third dose of COVID vaccine to long-term care residents, probably around October, said Dr Henry today. She also says BC is preparing to give a booster to those with immune-compromising conditions.

vax van, island health
People lined up to register for COVID vaccination at the Island Health mobile COVID immunization clinic (courtesy of the Vax Van!) in the Canadian Tire parking lot in Langford on August 15, 2021. [Island Social Trends]

The elephant in the room is whether young adults will need boosters this winter, due to the sped-up interval between doses, i.e. most people who got their first dose in July or August will get their second dose after 28 days.

Meanwhile Dr Henry has always advocated for the effectiveness of a longer interval. In the spring of 2021 the ideal interval was targeted at 11 weeks for a while, and today she said six to eight months is probably optimal.

COVID notification in schools:

Public health leaders are asking parents and families to make wise choices during this fourth wave of #COVID. If there’s a known exposure, that supports smart decision-making for the safety of families and friends. Island Social Trends asked on Twitter today if parents would want to know about an exposure in their school, or assume that ‘no news is good news’.

poll, twitter, covid
Poll on Twitter as to whether parents would want to know if there’s a COVID exposure in their child(ren)’s school. [August 31, 2021 by @IslandSocTrends]

A quick poll asked this: “Today Dr Henry said there seemed to be more angst last year about getting a letter than not (re any #COVID in-#school exposure). To #parents: If your child was not deemed as exposed would you prefer to still receive a letter, or get no letter & assume no news is good news?” And after the first hour (participation is anonymous), the results were:

  • Yes I’d want a letter 85.7%
  • No news is good news 14.3%

Parent comments:

Some comments from parents today on Twitter, in response to @IslandSocTrends posting about whether parents would be notified about an exposure at their child(ren)’s school:

comments, parents, covid
Robust feedback about whether or not parents should be advised about COVID exposures at their children’s school. August 31, 2021 at @IslandSocTrends on Twitter.
  • I am a parent. I want to know what is happening at my child’s school. ~ Mamma Bear
  • I am a parent and I want to know when covid is in my school even if it is not in my child’s class. Knowledge is power and allows my family to make decisions based on risk and comfort level. ~ @BCschoolCovid
  • Why would I NOT want to know? Maybe that means we skip visiting the grandparents for a week or 2? Or don’t expose other vulnerable friends and family. How can you plan to keep people safe without the correct info? ~ @KdCoates2017
  • I am a parent and Dr Henry does not speak for me. I want to know about exposures in my kids schools. I want to know about exposures in my community!! I have a right to protect my health and that of my family. ~ @Kristy91808800
  • The angst from receiving the letters was not because my child was exposed but because of how long it took to find out my child was exposed. ~ Hilda Car
  • I absolutely want to know if there’s a COVID case at my child’s school. @DrBonnieHenry @adriandix @jjhorgan ~ Loretta Walsh
  • At this point I have learned to expect that Public Health and the government are not “accurately reporting” (being charitable here) school exposure/transmission data, so “no news” is more anxiety producing than actually getting all the data in a transparent/timely manner. ~ Julia Smith
  • I wish the PHO would stop trying to reduce public anxiety by controlling the data and rather do so by taking action to make the population safer. ~ Julia Smith
  • Time to take control, Parents: if your child tests positive, inform the principal ASAP and insist that the exposure be anonymously shared with the school community. Teachers and other #bced workers: commit to doing the same. ~ Julia Smith
  • Almost all parents would want to know if a Covid exposure occurred at their child’s school. The issue is timeliness, last years letters by Public Health took far to long after that exposure occurred. The speed of the letter or notification needs to be faster to be effective. ~ N Vatic
  • I want to be notified. It would be easy enough for schools to set up an email list for such notifications that parents could opt into. ~ Jo Brecken
  • Transparency is key to trust. BC has been the least transparent province throughout the pandemic. That is what causes concern not the exposure letters. It is quite a patronizing approach. Some families have heightened risk. I’m disgusted by this news. It’s Alberta’s policies. (replying to @B49449739 @BCschoolCovid and @IslandSocTrends) ~ giraffeamongsheep
  • Yup. She says it’s a “pandemic of the unvaccinated”, yet sends our unvaccinated kids into poorly ventilated over stuffed classrooms. Most of last year’s school protections have been taken away. It’s Trump’s “let ‘er rip, if we don’t test we don’t have cases” strategy. ~ S. Mills
  • How many families rely on grandparents to help with childcare? DBH never understands that children are part of the community. Withholding this information puts whole communities at risk, including more vulnerable people. Parents need transparency to help protect those we love! ~ Jane Winters
  • Not knowing- flying blind– creates a whole lot of stress that won’t ease until the end of June. Especially with unvaccinated kids under 12 and unmasked & unvaccinated kids under 9. ~ Alyson Skinner
  • Really, such a simple thing to ask for in the middle of a deadly pandemic. ~ Jennifer-Juniper Angeli
  • The high schools here have rapid testing for all those who have been exposed and parents will be called. We having shot clinics at all schools. #WeRTrying ~ Andrea Leithoff
banner, Monk, find a location
Check out the new Monk Office website.

===== COVID INFORMATION LINKS (provided by BC Health):

For the Aug. 31, 2021, modelling presentation, visit: http://news.gov.bc.ca/files/8-31_PHO_modelling.pdf

For the provincial health officer’s order on masks in public indoor settings, visit: https://news.gov.bc.ca/25217

For the Aug. 23, 2021, announcement on proof of vaccination in B.C., visit: https://news.gov.bc.ca/25211

For the Aug. 12, 2021, announcement on mandatory COVID-19 vaccinations for long-term care workers, visit: https://news.gov.bc.ca/25143

Randall Garrison, re-elect

For new health measures in the central Okanagan, visit:
https://www.interiorhealth.ca/AboutUs/MediaCentre/NewsReleases/Documents/IB_COVID_Outbreak_6%20August.pdf

For information on breakthrough cases, visit: http://news.gov.bc.ca/files/7-27_breakthrough_cases.pdf

Or see the BC Centre for Disease Control’s (BCCDC) weekly data summary: http://www.bccdc.ca/health-info/diseases-conditions/covid-19/data#summary

reunion at belmont, condo, langford, banner
Condo-living in Langford.

Detailed data is posted daily on the BCCDC dashboard: http://www.bccdc.ca/health-info/diseases-conditions/covid-19/data
Or: www.bccdc.ca

To register to be immunized or to learn about getting your second dose, visit: https://www2.gov.bc.ca/gov/content/covid-19/vaccine/register
Or: https://www2.gov.bc.ca/gov/content/covid-19/vaccine/dose-2

To learn about BC’s Restart plan, visit: https://www2.gov.bc.ca/gov/content/covid-19/info/restart

For recent modelling, visit: http://news.gov.bc.ca/files/6-28_PHO_presentation.pdf

oaktree naturals
Stock up for back to school.

For the provincial health officer’s orders and guidance, visit:
https://www2.gov.bc.ca/gov/content/health/about-bc-s-health-care-system/office-of-the-provincial-health-officer/current-health-topics/covid-19-novel-coronavirus

For guidance on restrictions, visit:
https://www2.gov.bc.ca/gov/content/safety/emergency-preparedness-response-recovery/covid-19-provincial-support/restrictions

The latest updates, including case counts, prevention, risks and to find a testing centre near you: http://www.bccdc.ca/
Or follow @CDCofBC on Twitter.

For COVID-19 exposure events, updates and information, visit:

* BCCDC: http://www.bccdc.ca/health-info/diseases-conditions/covid-19/public-exposures

* Fraser Health: fraserhealth.ca/covid19exposure

* Interior Health: https://news.interiorhealth.ca/news/public-exposures/

* Island Health: https://www.islandhealth.ca/learn-about-health/covid-19/data-outbreaks-facilities

* Northern Health: https://www.northernhealth.ca/health-topics/outbreaks-and-exposures

* Vancouver Coastal Health: http://www.vch.ca/covid-19/public-exposures

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