COVID-19: B.C. reports 402 new cases, daily new infections double in a week

Click to play video: 'COVID-19 cases spike to more than 400 in B.C.'
COVID-19 cases spike to more than 400 in B.C.
British Columbia is confronting a new wave of COVID-19 infections hitting mainly people between the ages of 20 and 40 while health officials pull out all the stops to get vaccines into the arms of the willing. John Hua reports. – Aug 5, 2021

B.C. appears well in the grip of a fourth wave of COVID-19, with the number of new cases reported Thursday nearly doubling the figure one week ago.

In a written statement, health officials reported 402 new cases, up from 204 on July 29 and the first time the figure has topped 400 since mid-May.

Click to play video: 'More than 16,000 vaccines were administered at B.C.’s first Walk-In Wednesday'
More than 16,000 vaccines were administered at B.C.’s first Walk-In Wednesday
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It brought the seven-day average for new cases to 247, the highest it has been since the beginning of June.

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There were no new deaths.

“We are, as you know, right now experiencing a surge in cases, particularly among people between the ages of 20 and 40,” provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry said at a briefing earlier on Thursday.

“Ninety-five per cent across the province of people who are infected right now are unimmunized or have not yet had their second dose.”

Interior Health continues to lead the rapid growth, reporting 234 of the new cases.

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Eighty-two were in the Fraser Health region, 41 were in the Vancouver Coastal Health region, 20 were in the Northern Health region and 25 were in the Island health region.

Active cases climbed to 2,066, topping 2,000 for the first time since June 9.

While the number of hospitalized patients reached its highest level since mid-July, the upward trend has been far slower than in new and active cases.

“We’ve seen a slight increase in hospitalization, primarily in unvaccinated people in their 40s and 50s, so the younger people that are most commonly being infected right now with the Delta variant are not ending up in hospital for the most part,” Henry said.

“We’re seeing a decoupling of the cases and hospitalization.”

Hospitalizations ticked up slightly to 58, 21 of whom were in critical or intensive care.

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More than 3.78 million British Columbians — 81.7 per cent of those eligible and 73.5 per cent of B.C.’s population — have had at least one dose of COVID-19 vaccine.

More than 3.17 million people — 68.4 per cent of those eligible and 61.6 per cent of the population — have been fully immunized.

The province says 33,277 got vaccinated on B.C.’s first “Walk-in Wednesday” immunization event, representing a modest boost of 3,773 over the figure reported Wednesday.

Since the start of the pandemic, B.C. has reported 147,510 cases, while 1,772 people have died.

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