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Island Health has second-highest active COVID case count in province

The province reported 406 new cases of COVID-19 on Tuesday, including 51 in the Island Health region.
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The province announced 406 new cases of COVID-19 on Tuesday, including 51 in the Island Health region. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Paul Chiasson

Island Health had the second highest number of active cases in the province on Tuesday and continues to accept more than half of all the critically ill patients being transferred out of Northern Health.

The province reported 406 new cases of COVID-19 on Tuesday, including 51 in the Island Health region.

That brings Island Health’s total to 652 active cases, second only to Fraser Health with 2,157, out of a total of 4,694 active cases in the province.

Among COVID hot spots in the region is the Island’s west side, which includes Gold River and Tahsis, where case counts are 61 per 100,000, amongst the highest in the province, and where the vaccination rate hovers around 76 per cent, which is lower than the provincial average.

On Tuesday, 58 people in Island Health were in hospital with COVID, including 26 in critical care.

At the same time, Island Health continues to accept more patients from Northern Health, where a COVID outbreak is overwhelming hospitals.

From Sept. 5 to Nov. 1, 92 patients were transferred out of northern B.C. to other parts of the province. Of those, Island Health has accepted 46, including three on Monday. All but four of the patients were COVID-19 positive.

Four of the five COVID deaths in the province reported on Tuesday were from Northern Health area and one was from Interior Health, regions with the lowest vaccination rates in the province.

A total of 2,186 people in B.C. have died of the disease since the beginning of the pandemic.

Two new health-care facility outbreaks were reported, including one in the transitional care unit of Nanaimo Regional General Hospital, where four patients have tested positive, for a total of 41 outbreaks in B.C., most of them in long-term care facilities.

The province said 85 per cent of people age 12 and older and eligible to receive the vaccine are now fully vaccinated.

ceharnett@timescolonist.com

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