COVID-19 update: B.C. adds 56 cases, tops 1M people fully vaccinated
VANCOUVER -- More than one million B.C. residents have received both doses of COVID-19 vaccine, health officials revealed Tuesday while announcing just 56 new cases across the province.
Health-care workers have administered 4,511,923 shots of the Pfizer-BioNTech, Moderna and AstraZeneca vaccines so far, including enough first doses for 77.7 per cent of B.C.'s adult population.
Some 1,001,192 of the shots have been second doses, providing the additional antibody protection that officials have said is crucial for getting life back to normal.
Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry marked the milestone from Prince George, where she stressed the importance of getting vaccinated even in smaller communities that have seen lower levels of transmission.
"The risks may be smaller with fewer people coming and going, but we also know that communities across the north are very connected," Henry said. "And as we have seen, if the unwelcome guest of COVID-19 enters a community, it can have a tremendous and sometimes devastating impact."
The vaccination rate in several regions of the north remains well below the provincial average, including Peace River North, where just 51 per cent of adults had received a shot as of June 17, the most recent data available from the B.C. Centre for Disease Control.
Henry acknowledged there has been less easy access to vaccine in the north, and encouraged residents to contact the Northern Health Authority with suggestions for events or gatherings "where a pop-up clinic or a mobile clinic would work in your community."
"We can bring vaccine to those who need it and who haven't had a chance yet," the provincial health officer said.
Case numbers have been plummeting for weeks, with B.C.'s seven-day average dropping from a record of 1,130 back in April to just 90 as of Tuesday.
The active caseload has dropped to 1,150 – the lowest it's been since Sept. 2 – while hospitalizations increasing slightly to 111, including 41 people in intensive care.
Henry said the outbreak at Heritage Manor II, an assisted living facility in Fort St. John, has ended, leaving just three active outbreaks in care homes and acute care centres across the province.
Of all the people who have tested positive for COVID-19 across the province so far, about 98 per cent have recovered.