B.C. health officials on Friday reported 646 people in hospital with COVID-19, including 95 in intensive care, as the province reported six more deaths from the disease and 2,275 new cases.
The new numbers represent an increase of 112 COVID-19 patients in hospital, but health officials said during a Friday morning briefing that they had to be tested for COVID-19 to include those admitted for other reasons. The one-time spike was expected after the way hospitals were counted. tested positive for the disease.
Seven fewer patients appeared in the ICU in the province as compared to Thursday.
Experts say hospitalization is a more accurate barometer of the disease’s impact, as the number of new cases in B.C. is likely to be much higher than reported, now that the province has hit its testing limit due to an omicron surge Is.
There are currently 35,943 active cases of people infected with the novel coronavirus in BC
The provincial death toll from COVID-19 is 2,468 out of 2,468 confirmed cases so far.
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There are a total of 46 active outbreaks in assisted living, long term and acute care facilities.
Acute care outbreaks include:
- Surrey Memorial Hospital.
- Eagle Ridge Hospital.
- Royal Colombian Hospital.
- Abbotsford Regional Hospital.
- Langley Memorial Hospital.
- Laurel Place.
- Burnaby Hospital.
- Peace Arch Hospital.
- Kelowna General Hospital.
- Royal Jubilee Hospital.
As of Friday, 89 percent of people five and older in BC had received the first dose of a COVID-19 vaccine and 83.3 percent had received the second dose.
From January 6 to 12, those who were not fully vaccinated accounted for 21.5 percent of cases and from December 30 to January 12, they hospitalized 34.2 percent, according to the province.
A total of 1.4 million people have received the booster shot so far.
Antivirals on the way
As pandemic-weary provinces with a strained health care system face another wave of COVID-19 cases, Health Canada is looking at new products that may offer some relief: antivirals.
Two such drugs are making their way through the Maze Health Canada approval process: Pfizer’s paxlovid and Merck’s molnupiravir.
These antiviral treatments, which are prescribed by a doctor and given in pill form, are designed to help the body fight the SARS-CoV-2 virus, reduce symptoms of infection, and shorten the duration of illness. Huh.
New York-based pharmaceutical giant Pfizer, which has also developed a highly effective COVID-19 vaccine, began sending Paxlovid data to Health Canada regulators on December 1.
Health Minister Jean-Yves Duclos told reporters on Wednesday that some kind of approval could be received soon.
“The Health Canada approval process is progressing rapidly, as has been the case with many other approval processes over the past 22 months,” Duclos said.