Vancouver Island adds 26 more COVID-19 cases
Dr. Bonnie Henry is given the COVID-19 vaccine on Tuesday, Dec. 22, 2020. (Government of B.C.)
VICTORIA -- Health officials have confirmed 26 more cases of COVID-19 in the Vancouver Island region Friday.
The cases were among 634 found across the province over the last 24 hours, health officials said in their final COVID-19 update of the week.
There are now 305 active cases of COVID-19 in the Vancouver Island region, including 17 people in hospital and two in critical care.
Island Health has identified the locations of 256 of the active cases. There are 139 in the Central Island, 62 in the North Island and 55 in the South Island.
Four more people have died of the virus in B.C., bringing the province's death toll to 1,380. No deaths were reported in the Island Health region, where the death toll has reached 27.
"We offer our condolences to everyone who has lost loved ones to COVID-19," said provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry and Health Minister Adrian Dix in a joint statement.
The Island Health region has now confirmed 2,515 cases of COVID-19 since the pandemic began.
B.C. identified four new COVID-19 variant cases Friday. The province has now confirmed 250 variant cases, 12 of which are currently active.
Meanwhile, health-care teams have administered 12,357 more vaccine doses over the past 24 hours, for a total of 311,208 doses, including 86,865 second doses.
Health officials say the province's vaccine rollout plan is gaining momentum, and remind British Columbians aged 90 and over that they can begin booking vaccine appointments on Monday.
Indigenous people over the age of 65 can also arrange for a vaccine appointment starting March. 8.
"In addition to our immunization program, we are regularly reviewing the public health restrictions to assess when we can safely ease them," said Henry and Dix.
"We know many are keen to resume activities and we will open what we can when we have the confidence it is safe to do so."