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‘Certainly been a long two years’: B.C. marks COVID-19 anniversary

Click to play video: 'COVID-19: B.C. health officials mark 2nd year of pandemic by looking back' COVID-19: B.C. health officials mark 2nd year of pandemic by looking back
Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry and Health Minister Adrian Dix share their thoughts with reporters Friday on how they might have handled the pandemic differently. – Jan 28, 2022

It has been two years since the vast majority of B.C. residents were introduced to provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry.

On Jan. 28, 2020, Henry and Health Minister Adrian Dix announced the province’s first case of the novel coronavirus, and was Canada’s third.

“It’s certainly been a long two years,” Dix quipped during a news conference Friday to mark the event.

Click to play video: 'Canada’s third coronavirus case presumed in B.C.' Canada’s third coronavirus case presumed in B.C.
Canada’s third coronavirus case presumed in B.C – Jan 28, 2020

Read more: First presumptive case of coronavirus confirmed in B.C.

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Henry took a look back at the province’s journey navigating the virus, highlighting the vaccination rates.

To date, 92.6 per cent of British Columbians 12 years old and up have received their first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine.

Ninety per cent of residents 12 years old and up have received a second dose. Forty-three per cent have received a booster dose.

Click to play video: 'Long-term care home outbreaks continue to drive B.C.’s high COVID-19 death rate' Long-term care home outbreaks continue to drive B.C.’s high COVID-19 death rate
Long-term care home outbreaks continue to drive B.C.’s high COVID-19 death rate – Jan 28, 2022

When it comes to children ages five to 11, 51 per cent of them have received their first dose.

“There have been five waves, many variants and likely many more to come. “Contact tracing is not something that works with this kind of spread,” Henry said, echoing comments she made a week ago in a major shift in the province’s strategy.

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Henry again acknowledged that not everyone can be tested, and that tests need to be saved for those working in health care and other high-risk environments.

As of Thursday, there are 29,556 active cases in the province, and 284,832 people who tested positive have recovered, the province reports. Of the active cases, 977 individuals are in hospital and 141 are in intensive care.

In total, 2,588 people have now died from complications due to the virus.

Read more: COVID-19 — Another 13 deaths in B.C. as hospitalization numbers hold steady

“As we move forward, these extraordinary measures will change,” Henry added, referring to the restrictions in place until Feb. 16.

“We know COVID-19 will be with us for some time. It’s not done with us yet.”

WATCH: The full Jan. 28, 2022 COVID-19 briefing from B.C. health officials

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