Record-breaking 47 COVID-19 cases added on Vancouver Island
Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry updates how the provincial election will be held during the COVID-19 pandemic during a press conference at the B.C. legislature in Victoria, B.C., on Tuesday, September 22, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
VICTORIA -- The Vancouver Island region recorded a record-breaking 47 new cases of COVID-19 on Thursday, shattering the previous high set one week ago.
The new cases were among 564 new cases found across B.C. over the past 24 hours, according to a statement Thursday from provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry and Health Minister Adrian Dix.
The previous high for the Island Health region was 34 new daily cases, set on Jan. 12 and tied on Jan. 15.
British Columbia recorded 15 more COVID-19-related deaths Thursday, health officials said, bringing B.C.’s total coronavirus death toll to 1,119.
“We offer our condolences to everyone who has lost their loved ones during the COVID-19 pandemic,” Dix and Henry said.
A total of 1,385 COVID-19 cases have now been recorded in the island region since the pandemic began.
There were 212 active cases in the region Thursday, including 14 people in hospital and six people in critical care. Seventeen people in the region have died of COVID-19 and 1,146 have recovered since the pandemic began.
Island Health data showed the locations of 201 active cases on Vancouver Island Thursday afternoon. Twenty-two of those cases were active in the South Island, 22 more were active in the North Island and 157 were active in the Central Island.
The Central Island, which includes the communities of Tofino, Port Alberni, Nanaimo and Duncan, added 38 new cases of the virus Thursday, according to the data. The North Island added four new cases while the densely populated South Island added just one new case.
Meanwhile, officials with Island Health have now declared that a COVID-19 outbreak at a long-term care home in Victoria has ended.
The Hart House outbreak was discovered on Jan. 9 when one staff member tested positive for the virus. On Thursday afternoon, a spokesperson for Island Health said the outbreak was over with no other staff or residents affected.
Health authorities have now administered 104,901 doses of the COVID-19 vaccine in B.C., including 1,680 secondary doses.
Despite the dramatic one-day rise in new cases on Vancouver Island, Dix and Henry said they remain optimistic that British Columbians are bending the curve of transmission downward.
“We must all continue to use our safety basics – at work, school, home and in the community,” the pair said. “Despite our COVID-19 curve trending in the right direction, we continue to have new outbreaks, community clusters and high numbers of new cases. COVID-19 continues to spread widely in our communities.”