Friday March 26, 2021 | VICTORIA, BC
by Mary P Brooke, B.Sc., editor | Island Social Trends
Over 100,000 first doses of COVID vaccine have been administered in Island Health as of today March 26.
At that good round number, the health authority calls it a “historic milestone”. Meanwhile, 100,000 count is about 13% of the population in the Island Health region.
Vaccinations began with health care workers on December 22, 2020 then long term care and assisted living residents and workers were offered immunization.
Phase 2 of the BC Immunization Plan (descending by age from 90+ / Indigenous 65+) began on March 15. The plan is a bit ahead of schedule, with people age 74+ being able to start booking appointments today.
Phases 3 & 4 will see “everyone who is eligible” receiving a first dose by July 1, 2021, said Island Health in a news release today.
The opportunity for a second dose comes approximately 16 weeks after the first, says Island Health. That’s based on the current National Advisory Committee on Immunization (NACI) recommendations.
Yesterday people age 75+ could start booking their vaccination appointments. Today the appointment bookings opened to people age 74+.
Starting Monday March 29 at noon, people with higher risk conditions (called CEVs or clinically extremely vulnerable) — who receive letters with an invitation to be vaccinated — can start booking their appointments.
Vaccine supply & administration in Island Health:
To date, Island Health has received 139,510 doses from the provincial supply (which is procured by the federal government); that is comprised of 139,510 doses of Moderna, 101,010 doses of Pfizer, and 1,000 doses of AstraZeneca.
To date, the actual administered number of vaccine doses in Island Health is 97,840 (stats provided by BC Centre for Disease Control (BC CDC) today) — which would have surpassed 100,000 during the day today at clinics around Vancouver Island.
Of the 97,840 doses delivered into people’s arms by Island Health, 10,132 have been second doses. More specifically: Pfizer 70,878 doses (8,289 second doses), Moderna 26,680 doses (1,843 second doses), and AstraZeneca 282 doses (second doses not applicable).
Vancouver Island COVID stats (March 26, 2021):
Today there were 908 new COVID-19 cases province-wide, as reported by the BC Centre for Disease Control (BC CDC). That tops yesterday’s record (800) for highest daily total this year. Of today’s new cases, 55 were in Island Health (yesterday 45).
That brings the total number of COVID cases in Island Health to 3,096 of which 307 are presently active.
COVID hospitalizations in Island Health stand at 14 today (one in ICU), with a pandemic total of 162.
The positivity rate on Vancouver Island is higher today at 4.4 than in all of March (where it’s been in the range of 3.0 to 3.7, reaching 3.9 yesterday).
There have been no new COVID deaths in Island Health since March 8; the total is 28, pandemic-to-date.
Link to Island Health COVID dashboard (updated daily, Mon-Fri)
Pandemic going forward:
The COVID-19 pandemic (declared as a health emergency in BC and across Canada) is in its second year. The pandemic was first officially declared by the World Health Organization on March 11, 2020 and then six days later on March 17, 2021 in BC.
Today Dr Theresa Tam of the Public Health Agency of Canada (PHAC) said that gaining control won’t be quick as variants gain ground, vaccine supply is limited (though increasing) and younger adults increasingly impacted as the virus finds new hosts beyond the most vulnerable seniors and elders who have for the most part been mostly vaccinated.
This past week there have been 92 deaths per day on average due to COVID infection, with 2,680 people being treated in hospital on average (530 in ICU). The average daily case count in Canada this week was 6,415.
Vaccines approved in Canada:
The COVID-19 vaccines that have been approved by Health Canada are safe, effective and will save lives, says the Public Health Agency of Canada. To date, four vaccines have been approved for use by Health Canada.
- Learn about the Pfizer vaccine
- Learn about the Moderna vaccine
- Learn about the AstraZeneca/SII COVISHIELD (AZ/SII) vaccine
- Learn about the Johnson & Johnson vaccine
BC opens up amidst record cases & variant spread:
Despite the raging case counts, the increasing prevalence of variants (total now 1,912 of which 140 were new today), and more serious impact of COVID among young adults (now that vulnerable older people have been vaccinated), yesterday BC Provincial Health Officer Dr Bonnie Henry loosened restrictions on visitation in long-term care starting April 1.
As well, there is an opening up of religious gatherings on a limited basis during March 28 to May 13 in BC (to accommodate the Easter/Passover season).
In BC there have now been 95,677 COVID cases, of which 6,245 are active.
Today 294 people are hospitalized (81 in ICU); total hospitalizations now at 5,057.
Almost 10,000 people (9,996) are self-isolating due to exposure.
The BC COVID positivity rate is at its highest point ever, now at 8.9% (and highest also in Island Health at 4.4%).
Three new COVID deaths were reported in BC today, total 1,449 to date.
===== BC GOVERNMENT LINKS:
To view the March 18, 2021, immunization PowerPoint presentations, visit: https://news.gov.bc.ca/files/03.18.2021_COVID_Immunization_Plan.pdf
Latest vaccine information:
For vaccine information, visit the BCCDC dashboard: http://www.bccdc.ca/health-info/diseases-conditions/covid-19/data
Joint statement on first deployment of AstraZeneca vaccine in B.C.: https://news.gov.bc.ca/24001
Provincial health officer orders and guidance:
The latest updates, guidance and information on COVID-19, and where to get tested:
The latest medical updates, including case counts, prevention, risks and to find a testing centre near you: http://www.bccdc.ca/ or follow @CDCofBC on Twitter.
For data regarding ongoing outbreaks in long-term care, assisted-living and independent-living facilities in B.C., visit: http://www.bccdc.ca/health-info/diseases-conditions/covid-19/data#outbreak
Mental health support:
Mental health and anxiety support: www.bouncebackbc.ca
To share your feedback in the Personal Impacts of COVID-19 Survey, visit: https://www.bcchr.ca/POP/our-research/pics
Non-health related information:
Financial, child care and education support, travel, transportation and essential service information: www.gov.bc.ca/covid19
Or call 1 888 COVID19 (1 888 268-4319) between 7:30 a.m. and 8 p.m. (Pacific time), seven days a week.
COVID-19 exposure events, updates and information by health authority:
BCCDC (flights, work sites, etc): 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/outbreaks-and-exposures
Northern Health: https://www.northernhealth.ca/health-topics/outbreaks-and-exposures
Vancouver Coastal Health: http://www.vch.ca/covid-19/public-exposures
For the latest videos and livestreaming of COVID-19 media availabilities, visit: