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COVID-19 cases in B.C. hospitals, critical care units creep upward again

Click to play video: 'Provincial government quietly lifts self-isolation requirement for people who contract COVID-19'
Provincial government quietly lifts self-isolation requirement for people who contract COVID-19
The BC Centre for Disease Control, however, is still recommending staying home if you're sick, no matter if you've come down with COVID, influenza, or RSV. Julia Foy reports. – Nov 19, 2022

The number of patients with COVID-19 in B.C.’s hospitals and critical care units has crept upward for another week, according to the latest data from the B.C. Centre for Disease Control (BCCDC).

As of Dec. 2, there were 369 positive cases in hospitals, up from 328 in the week prior. The number of patients in critical care increased by one to 38.

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The province’s hospitalization model counts all cases in hospitals, regardless of the patient’s initial reason for admission.

The weekly data release was delayed by a day due to what the BCCDC described as a temporary “disruption to the network infrastructure.”

Read more: B.C. COVID cases in critical care jump while number in hospital holds flat

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For the week ending Nov. 26, the province reported just 604 new cases of COVID-19, though that figure is limited by severely restricted lab testing, reserved for the most at risk groups.

That same week, B.C. conducted just 7,234 tests. Provincewide, test-positivity climbed to 10.5 per cent from 9.8 per cent.

For the week ending Nov. 26, the BCCDC reported 161 new hospital admissions — a preliminary figure that is typically revised upward by more than 20 per cent the following week.

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Assessing how many people are actually dying from the virus also remains difficult with available data.

The BCCDC reported 26 deaths for the week ending Nov. 26, though this figure is also preliminary and expected to rise. That fatality figure also includes anyone who died within 30 days of their first positive test, a metric the province acknowledges overestimates death.

Subsequent review of deaths reported this way since April has found about four in 10 were actually caused by COVID-19. That process takes at least eight weeks.

Of the 1,651 “COVID deaths” reported this way since April 1, 657 were found to have actually been caused by the virus, while 846 were from other causes and 148 remained under investigation.

The BCCDC’s latest situation report shows that 89 per cent of those COVID deaths were among people aged 70 and older.

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That same report confirmed at least 59 COVID-19 deaths between Sept. 3 and Oct. 1, an average of about 2.1 per day.

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