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COVID-19: B.C. reports another 15 deaths as hospitalizations see first dip in 2 weeks

Click to play video: 'COVID-19: B.C. reports 891 people in hospital, 119 in critical care' COVID-19: B.C. reports 891 people in hospital, 119 in critical care
In a written statement, B.C. health officials report 891 people are in hospital, and 119 are in critical care due to COVID-19 related illness on Tuesday, Jan. 20. Legislative bureau chief Keith Baldrey has more details on the daily COVID-19 case numbers and the 15 people who died. – Jan 20, 2022

British Columbia reported 15 more COVID-19-related deaths on Thursday, as it saw the number of cases in hospital dip for the first time in more than two weeks.

There were 891 positive cases of COVID in the province’s hospitals, an overnight drop of four, including 119 cases in critical or intensive care, an overnight increase of four.

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B.C. health officials confirmed another 2,150 new cases, however daily new case numbers are no longer considered an accurate metric to track the pandemic amid limited access to testing.

Officials also announced eight new health-care facility outbreaks, for a total of 58 province-wide, including 10 in hospitals or acute care settings, and 47 in long-term care.

As of Thursday, 86.5 per cent of B.C.’s population (89.4 per cent of those eligible) have had one dose of vaccine, 80.8 per cent of the population (83.5 per cent of those eligible) has had two doses and 33 per cent of the population (36.7 per cent of those eligible) has had three doses.

Fully vaccinated people accounted for 73 per cent of cases over the past week and 69 per cent of cases in hospital over the past two weeks.

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Unvaccinated people, however, remain at a greater risk of severe outcomes. On a per-capita basis, they represented 72.1 hospitalizations per 100,000 population, compared to 16.5 hospitalizations among people with two or more doses.

Since the start of the pandemic, B.C. has reported a total of 305,715 cases, while 2,520 people have died.

Click to play video: 'BC CDC adjusts isolation requirements for close contacts' BC CDC adjusts isolation requirements for close contacts
BC CDC adjusts isolation requirements for close contacts – Jan 20, 2022

Read more: BC Centre for Disease Control apologizes for isolation guidance flip flops

Earlier Thursday, the B.C. Centre for Disease Control apologized for causing confusion after quietly changing its COVID isolation guidelines several times in as many days.

The final updated guidelines say unvaccinated adults must still isolate for 10 days after the onset of symptoms, but that anyone aged 17 or younger may now isolate for just five days.

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The province has also waived isolation requirements for all close contacts.

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