Vehicles drive past a display thanking essential workers in Burnaby, B.C. on Sunday, Nov. 29, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Marissa Tiel

Vehicles drive past a display thanking essential workers in Burnaby, B.C. on Sunday, Nov. 29, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Marissa Tiel

B.C. changing COVID-19 case reporting as virus spread continues

Manual counting takes more time, leads to errors

With daily case counts continuing high in B.C., public health officials are working to automate their reporting of COVID-19 to improve accuracy and efficiency, giving experts more time to analyze results rather than count them.

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry said the rolling seven-day average of infections is more useful to determine what is happening, with a “levelling off” of new infections over the weekend but still almost 600 recorded between Sunday and Monday. The B.C. Centre for Disease Control’s situation reports each Friday and its seven-day rolling average of test positivity reflect that, she said.

“We know where the issues are, and we know that’s reflected in the numbers and the analysis that we put out in the Friday bulletin,” Henry said Nov. 30. “I’ve heard issues around people travelling, whether it’s for work or also recreational travel, and bringing the virus back with them – things that we should not be doing right now. We know that it is associated with gatherings, even small gatherings where people are coming together and thinking it’s OK.”

RELATED: B.C. records 43 deaths in deadliest weekend of pandemic

RELATED: Victoria partiers hide in closets trying to avoid fines

There have also been data reporting errors, particularly as the Fraser Health region has dealt with most of the new infections in B.C. On Monday Henry said totals have been adjusted by adding an additional 277 historical cases that were not previously included.

“Today for example we did a revision and added the additional cases that had not made it into the daily list, even though each of those cases had been notified and public health is following up on them,” Henry said. “In the coming days, we will be switching our systems to automate some of the functions to make it easier, so that we’re not spending our time focusing on adding the numbers and being able to reconcile databases, and we’re able to use the work of the epidemiologists to understand more fully the contacts and the cases and the outbreaks and clusters in the community.

“These daily numbers are important, we recognize that, but it is a snapshot. What we need to track is the trends, are we going up, are we going down, are we levelling off?”


@tomfletcherbc
tfletcher@blackpress.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

BC politicsCoronavirus

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Agassiz resident Miel Bernstein is collecting sanitary products for locals in need. These products came from her donation drive before Christmas and were delivered to people in need in Chilliwack and Agassiz. (Contributed)
Agassiz resident collecting pads, tampons for women in need

The program will help provide menstrual and incontinence products for people in Chilliwack, Agassiz

(THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette)
Seabird Island to receive COVID-19 vaccine in the coming weeks

All members 18 years and older will be eligible to be vaccinated

Prolific offender Jonathan David Olson (left) and Brodie Tyrel Robinson, both of Chilliwack, were convicted of several offences in BC Supreme Court in August 2019 in connection to a crime spree on the Canada Day long weekend in 2017.
Chilliwack gangster sentenced to 11.5 years in prison for 2017 crime spree

Jonathan Olson involved in shooting a fellow crime associate in the head

Pete Ryan, known all over the world for his chainsaw carvings, died on Friday, Jan. 8. He was 70 years old. (Contributed Photo/Dignity Memorial)
Iconic Hope chainsaw carver Pete Ryan has passed away

Ryan is a founding member of Hope’s famous chainsaw carving community

Screenshot from video.
2 students arrested in assault of transgender girl at Mission middle school

Mother said daughter was targeted because of how she identifies

A woman wears a face mask and shield to curb the spread of COVID-19 while walking in North Vancouver, B.C., on Wednesday, January 6, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
536 COVID cases, 7 deaths reported as B.C. find its first case of South African variant

Henry said 69,746 people have received their first dose of the COVID vaccine.

Alan Davidson was sentenced to almost six years for abusing seven boys in the late 1970s and early 1990s. (Canadian Press file)
Full parole granted to former Mountie, sports coach convicted of sex abuse of boys

Alan Davidson convicted of abusing boys in B.C. and Saskatchewan in late ’70s, early ’90s

Letisha Reimer died Nov. 1, 2016 after being stabbed at Abbotsford Senior Secondary.
No evidence that killer was in ‘psychotic state’ during Abbotsford school stabbing: Crown

Second day of closing arguments at ‘not criminally responsible’ hearing for Gabriel Klein

The first COVID-19 vaccine arrives in B.C. in temperature-controlled containers, Dec. 13, 2020. (B.C. government)
More vaccine arrives as B.C. struggles with remote COVID-19 cases

Long-term care homes remain focus for public health

The first Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine dose in Canada is prepared at The Michener Institute in Toronto on Monday, Dec. 14, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Frank Gunn
Doses of COVID-19 vaccine expected in 60 B.C. First Nations by next week

B.C. has allocated 25,000 doses of COVID-19 vaccine to First Nations for distribution by the end of February

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good
Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Kamloops-South Thompson MLA Todd Stone questions the NDP government in the B.C. legislature, Feb. 25, 2020. (Hansard TV)
Todd Stone says he’s not running for B.C. Liberal leadership

Kamloops MLA was widely viewed as a front-runner

Wireless voice and data services are out for those on Telus as of Thursday (Jan. 14) afternoon across Western Canada, Telus Support said in a recent Tweet. (Black Press file photo)
UPDATE: Telus services restored across Western Canada

Telus said they are monitoring the situation to ensure connections remain stable

Most Read