Agassiz and Harrison saw 69 cases of COVID-19 hit the community in the last two months — nearly three-quarters of the total cases for the year.
Since the start of the pandemic, the community has seen 95 positive COVID-19 cases. Nearby Hope has had 33, while Chilliwack was hit with 1,185. (These numbers only include positive test results, and do not necessarily represent the total number of infections in the community.)
The local health area — which goes as far north as the Samahquam First Nation, and includes Agassiz, Harrison Hot Springs, Sts’ailes, Seabird Island and the Shxw’ow’hamel First Nation — saw only seven cases during the first seven months of the year.
Increases in positive cases were small until the fall, with one new case being reported in August and three new cases in September.
However, October saw 15 new cases for the area. Although this was a small portion of the 100 new cases for the Fraser Valley that month, it marked a significant increase for the community.
November saw 40 additional COVID-19 cases, and December saw 29.
Those final months included two outbreaks at Agassiz’s long-term care home, which resulted in at least five infections. The last outbreak at the Agassiz Seniors Community ended on Dec. 28.
The increase in cases in Agassiz and Harrison correspond with a bump in infections across the Fraser Health region back in fall. At that time, the Fraser Health region had about 75 per cent of all B.C.’s active cases and Dr. Henry began instituting restrictions on gatherings in the area.
Currently, the Agassiz and Harrison health region is averaging between five and eight new infections every week. Between Dec. 27 and Jan. 2, the local health area had eight new cases.
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