B.C. reports no new COVID-19 deaths as hospitalizations continue to decline

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Global News Morning speaks with B.C. Health Minister Adrian Dix about why immunization rates among young children remain low, and what the province is doing to help boost numbers. – Mar 15, 2022

British Columbia has recorded no new COVID-19 deaths over the past 24 hours as hospitalizations linked to the virus continue decline.

On Tuesday, the province reported 345 people in hospital with the virus, down from 359 on Monday, and 50 patients in intensive care — a decrease of one.

The figures are a stark but promising contrast from Jan. 30, when 1,039 people were in hospitals as the Omicron variant swept the world.

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry lifted significant public health restrictions last week, including the mask mandate for public indoor places.

To date, the changes have not impacted the province’s key COVID-19 metrics.

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Officials reported 237 new COVID cases on Tuesday, but the province continues to limit PCR testing, meaning the true active case load is not known.

The province also announced that British Columbians aged 40 and older can pick up a box of five rapid tests at their local pharmacy. Those who test positive are asked to register that test result with the government.

In total, there have been 352,965 test-positive COVID-19 cases reported in B.C. since the pandemic began in March 2020.

The province is expecting another shipment of more than 4 million rapid tests from the federal government in the next three weeks.

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