COVID-19 patient count in B.C. ICUs lowest since August

Numbers of new and active COVID-19 infections are also in a steady decline

A nurse comforts a COVID-19 patient in hospital | Photo: Getty Images

Several metrics tracking the COVID-19 pandemic in B.C. continue to trend in the right direction. 

The numbers of new infections, active cases, and COVID-19 patients in B.C. hospital intensive care units all fell again today. Perhaps most importantly, the number of those who are dying from the disease appears to be tracking down. 

B.C. reported that health officials had detected 338 new COVID-19 infections in the past day, with that being the lowest number since November 1, when there were 332. 

Steadily lower numbers of new infections has helped push the number of active infections down to 3,568 – the lowest number since August 10, when there were 3,284 people actively battling COVID-19. 

COVID-19 hospitalizations held steady overnight, at 376, which is down from last week. Of those hospitalized, 107 need treatment in intensive care units (ICUs), with that being the lowest number since August 31.

One more person in B.C. lost their life overnight to the disease that has spawned a global pandemic. In the seven days prior to today, there were 55 deaths.

Of the 213,358 people known to have contacted COVID-19 in B.C., the province considers 207,275 to have recovered because, in most cases, they have gone 10 days after first feeling symptoms and are therefore not thought to be infectious. 

Another 1,208 people in the province received their first vaccination in the past day, while 2,475 others received needed second doses. That raises the number of people in B.C. with at least one dose of vaccine to 4,204,465, with 4,203,930 of those being fully vaccinated with two doses. 

The province's math shows that this is 90.7% of the eligible population having at least one dose of vaccine, while 86.8% of the population has had two doses. Provincial health officer Bonnie Henry has said that as the percentage of the population in B.C. rises, the risk of infection for everyone declines. 

The relatively small number of unvaccinated people continue to be the ones hardest hit by the pandemic. 

Between November 8 and November 14, people not fully vaccinated accounted for 60.5% of cases, and between November 1 and November 14, those individuals accounted for 68.5% of hospitalizations, according to government data. 

Older people also endure more serious bouts of COVID-19, which is why the government has required those who work in seniors' homes to be fully vaccinated. Nonetheless, B.C. has 23 active outbreaks at health-care facilities and seniors' homes. 

That number stayed steady overnight because one new outbreak was discovered, at Ridge Meadows Hospital in Maple Ridge, while the outbreak at Burnaby's Swedish Assisted Living was declared to be over. 

The 338 new cases include:
• 160 in Fraser Health;
• 40 in Vancouver Coastal Health;
• 39 in Interior Health;
• 57 in Northern Health; and
• 42 in Island Health.

The 3,568 active cases include:
• 1,297 in Fraser Health;
• 506 in Vancouver Coastal Health;
• 683 in Interior Health;
• 510 in Northern Health;
• 513 in Island Health; and
• 59 people who normally reside outside B.C. •