COVID-19 update for Oct. 12: Here’s the latest on coronavirus in B.C.

COVID-19 update for Oct. 12: Here’s the latest on coronavirus in B.C.

Here’s your daily update with everything you need to know on the novel coronavirus situation in B.C.

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Here’s your daily update with everything you need to know on the novel coronavirus situation in B.C. for Oct. 12, 2021.

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We’ll provide summaries of what’s going on in B.C. right here so you can get the latest news at a glance. This page will be updated regularly throughout the day, with developments added as they happen.

Check back here for more updates throughout the day. You can also get the latest COVID-19 news delivered to your inbox weeknights at 7 p.m. by subscribing to our newsletter here.


B.C.’S COVID-19 CASE NUMBERS

As of the latest figures given on Oct. 8:

• Total number of confirmed cases: 192,491 (5,969 active)
• New cases since Oct. 7: 743
• Total deaths: 2,001 (five additional deaths)
• Hospitalized cases: 360 (down 13)
• Intensive care: 137 (up five)
• Total vaccinations: 4,107,666 received first dose; 3,811,076 second doses
• Recovered from acute infection: 184,121
• Long-term care and assisted-living homes, and acute care facilities currently affected: 17

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IN-DEPTH:Here are all the B.C. cases of the novel coronavirus in 2021 | in 2020


B.C. GUIDES AND LINKS

COVID-19: Here’s everything you need to know about the novel coronavirus

COVID-19: B.C.’s vaccine passport is here and this is how it works

COVID-19: Here’s how to get your vaccination shot in B.C.

COVID-19: Look up your neighbourhood in our interactive map of case and vaccination rates in B.C.

COVID-19: Afraid of needles? Here’s how to overcome your fear and get vaccinated

COVID-19: Five things to know about the P1 variant spreading in B.C.

COVID-19: Here’s where to get tested in Metro Vancouver

B.C. COVID-19 Symptom Self-Assessment Tool


LATEST NEWS on COVID-19 in B.C.

B.C. health officials to offer COVID-19 update at noon

British Columbia’s health minister and top public health doctor are set to provide an update today on the COVID-19 situation.

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Adrian Dix and Dr. Bonnie Henry are due to speak at noon.

The province last reported daily case numbers on Friday, when there were 743 new COVID-19 diagnoses and five added deaths.

As of Friday, 88.6 per cent of eligible B.C. residents had received at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine, while 82.2 per cent were fully vaccinated.

As it stands, only those 12 and up are eligible to get vaccinated against COVID-19 in Canada, but the province confirmed over the weekend that it had opened up registration for younger kids through the Get Vaccinated portal.

Pfizer has requested Health Canada approve its vaccine for kids aged five to 11, and the B-C government is getting its ducks in a row for if and when that approval comes.

B-C Health spokesman Jeffrey Ferrier has said kids will be scheduled for their vaccination based on when it’s their turn, not when they register.

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He says the province will notify parents when it’s time to book an appointment for their children.

– The Canadian Press

Parents concerned about COVID-19 spread in schools, support mask mandates: survey

The majority of respondents in a newly released Canada-wide survey say they are concerned about the spread of COVID-19 in schools and want children and staff to wear masks.

The survey by the Canadian Hub for Applied and Social Research at the University of Saskatchewan was done by phone between Sept. 3 and Sept. 28. It asked 1,000 people about any worries in sending kids to school and their thoughts on what public health orders should be in place.

Most respondents (89 per cent) said they were vaccinated. Of those with children 12 and older who are eligible to get a dose, 81 per cent said their kids were also vaccinated.

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“Those who are vaccinated are more likely to have kids who are vaccinated and want to see the kids in the schools and staff wearing masks,” said research director Jason Disano.

Parents have been watching closely as children returned to classrooms across the country during the fourth wave of the pandemic.

The survey said respondents were largely confident in the safeguards at their children’s schools.

– The Canadian Press

Fraser Health schools have 30 times more active exposures than those in Vancouver Coastal Health

There are 174 active COVID-19 exposures in schools within Fraser Health compared to just six within Vancouver Coastal Health, latest figures show.

This comes despite Vancouver Coastal Health’s population (1.25 million) being just 30 per cent less than within Fraser Health (1.8 million) — though Fraser Health has a higher proportion of younger people than Vancouver Coastal Health.

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The latest Fraser Health active school exposure tally includes 32 exposures within Surrey Schools district and 27 within independent schools — the highest two numbers within districts in that health region.

None of Fraser Health’s 13 schools districts are without a COVID-19 exposure — and eight districts have more than 10 active exposures — while half of the 10 school districts within Vancouver Coastal Health have no active exposures.

The Vancouver School District (with 50,000 students) has three active exposures, compared to the 32 in Surrey (with 75,000 students).

There are 79 active exposures in schools within Interior Health — including six in Cranbrook, where the percentage of people aged 12 and over who are fully vaccinated is 74 per cent, compared to the provincial average of 82.2 per cent. The lowest vaccination rate within that health authority is in Enderby at 62 per cent.

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– David Carrigg

B.C.’s long-term care home workers allowed to work in more than one facility if short staffed

B.C.’s long-term care homes and assisted living facilities will again be able to request staff work in more than one facility should they face staff shortages.

A last-minute public health order to that effect was issued as employees at such facilities are required to be fully vaccinated by Tuesday, Oct. 12.

The exemption for vaccinated workers to work in more than one facility is a reversal of a health order issued in March 2020 designed to help stop the deadly spread of COVID-19 in those facilities, and it is one of many “extraordinary interventions” health authorities are advising home operators to use to deal with any staff shortage as a result of the vaccination order.

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“Operators should assume that all staff who have not had dose one by Friday, Oct. 8, will likely be ineligible to work” on Tuesday, said the directive from the public health office, dated Friday.

Health ministry staff didn’t return a request for comment on the holiday Monday.

“There is definitely going to be some gaps in staffing levels,” said Mike Klassen, spokesman for the B.C. Care Providers Association. “Some operators are going to find it more difficult than others.”

Klassen said it’s not known how many of the 40,000 workers in long term care and assisted living homes remain unvaccinated.

Health Minister Adrian Dix has said it is likely health care workers are inoculated at a higher rate than the provincial average. As of Friday, 73 per cent of British Columbians were fully vaccinated.

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B.C. has warned operators to be prepared for staff shortages and has set out three tiers of escalating remedies.

– Susan Lazaruk

MONDAY

Dangerous blood clots can occur in moderate COVID-19

A European study has found an elevated risk of a life-threatening blood clot called venous thromboembolism (VTE) in COVID-19 patients who were not critically ill.

The blood clot risk had previously been associated with severe COVID-19.

The researchers tracked 2,292 patients who came to hospital emergency rooms with mild or moderate COVID-19 but without VTE. Four weeks later, VTE had developed in roughly one of every 200 mildly ill patients who had not been hospitalized and nearly five of every 200 moderately ill patients overall, the researchers reported on Friday in Thrombosis Research.

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They conclude that doctors caring for mildly and moderately ill COVID-19 patients need to be aware of these risks, “especially in patients with moderate COVID-19 requiring hospitalization.”

– Reuters

 Mink to get COVID vaccine in Finland

Keen to avoid the total annihilation of farmed mink as seen in Denmark during the pandemic, the Finnish fur industry is organizing an inoculation program for the animals.

The Nordic nation has about half a million doses of a domestically developed vaccine ready to be deployed this winter, enough to protect the entire population of breeding minks from COVID-19. It’s the first such program in the European Union.

Mink are known to be particularly susceptible to the virus. Denmark last year culled 17 million animals after concerns emerged that a mutated form of the virus was spreading through its farms, and there’s evidence from the Netherlands the virus can jump between humans and mink.

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In Finland, farms operate under strict lockdowns and close surveillance. No infections have so far been confirmed in the country’s minks throughout the pandemic.

Marja Tiura, managing director of the Finnish Fur Breeders’ Association, said the vaccinations are carried out “to ensure the welfare of animals as well as to safeguard human health” and avoid the emergence of virus reservoirs. Interest in the vaccine has been “massive,” she said in an interview on Monday, though the substance developed jointly with the University of Helsinki only has a conditional usage permit since late September.

In July,  British Columbia has placed a moratorium on new mink farms and capped existing farms at their current numbers following outbreaks at several farms in the Fraser Valley.

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– Bloomberg

Merck Seeks Emergency Use Authorization for COVID-19 Pill

Merck & Co. and its partner Ridgeback Biotherapeutics LP sought emergency use authorization in the U.S. for molnupiravir, moving the pill closer to becoming the first oral antiviral treatment for Covid-19.

An application was submitted with the Food and Drug Administration for molnupiravir to treat mild-to-moderate Covid-19 in adults at risk of developing a severe illness that may require hospitalization, the companies said in a statement Monday.

Submissions to regulatory authorities worldwide are expected in the coming months after an interim analysis of clinical trial data found it cut the risk of hospitalization for such patients by half.

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– The Canadian Press


B.C. MAP OF WEEKLY COVID CASE COUNTS, VACCINATION RATES

Find out how your neighbourhood is doing in the battle against COVID-19 with the latest number of new cases, positivity rates, and vaccination rates:


B.C. VACCINE TRACKER



LOCAL RESOURCES for COVID-19 information

Here are a number of information and landing pages for COVID-19 from various health and government agencies.

B.C. COVID-19 Symptom Self-Assessment Tool

Vancouver Coastal Health – Information on Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19)

HealthLink B.C. – Coronavirus (COVID-19) information page

B.C. Centre for Disease Control – Novel coronavirus (COVID-19)

Government of Canada – Coronavirus disease (COVID-19): Outbreak update

World Health Organization – Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak

–with files from The Canadian Press

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