Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry answers questions during a press conference, March 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry answers questions during a press conference, March 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito

B.C. hospitalization from COVID-19 declining, 54 in intensive care

153 new cases confirmed Thursday, four additional deaths

B.C. public health officials reported 153 new cases of COVID-19 Thursday, the fifth straight day below 200, and hospitalizations continue to decline with increased vaccination.

There are 176 people in hospital with coronavirus-related conditions, down from 195 on Wednesday, and 49 in intensive care. There were four additional deaths in the 24 hours up to June 10, for a total of 1,729 since the pandemic began.

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry said two of the four deaths were in people older than 80, one in their 50s and one in their 60s, reflecting increased risk in older people. That trend is also evident in younger people.

“We’ve had no deaths and very few hospitalizations in school aged children,” Henry said. “Hospitalization is 10 times lower in children than in adults.”

Henry said B.C.’s vaccination clinics are now delivering 325,000 doses per week, using all available weekly vaccine supplies as second-dose appointments continue with high demand. Additional supplies of Moderna vaccine are expected to arrive starting next week.

The B.C. Centre for Disease Control’s latest modelling data show that the key public health measure for infection, the reproduction rate that shows how many people catch the virus from each infected person, is below one and falling in all areas of the province.

Health Minister Adrian Dix said Premier John Horgan will participate in Monday’s briefing, to announce if step two and three of B.C.’s restart plan are going ahead as scheduled. With stable and declining public health indicators, it includes a return to province-wide recreational travel and indoor seated gatherings up to 50 people effective Tuesday, June 15 and an easing of mandatory mask restrictions as soon as July 1.

“I’m confident that we can take this step as long as we increase our contacts in a slow and measured way,” Henry said.

RELATED: Here’s what you need to know about COVID-19 restart plan

RELATED: B.C. study shows good results from one dose of mRNA vaccine

While overall infection is declining, the variants of concern tracked by public health agencies world wide are now most of the new cases.

The Alpha variant, first identified in Britain, accounts for 54 per cent of B.C. cases in 2021, while the Gamma variant, identified first in Brazil, was found in 42 per cent of the sample infections analyzed in B.C. The Delta variant, from India, has grown to four per cent of cases and has increased in April and May since it was first detected.

Of the 153 new cases, 21 were confirmed in the Vancouver Coastal health region, 73 in Fraser Health, 11 on Vancouver Island, 39 in Interior Health and nine in Northern Health.


@tomfletcherbc
tfletcher@blackpress.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

BC legislatureCoronavirus

Just Posted

(Adam Louis/Observer)
PHOTOS: Students leap into action in track events at Kent Elementary

At Kent Elementary, when the sun’s outside, the fun’s outside. The intermediate… Continue reading

Chilliwack potter Cathy Terepocki (left) and Indigenous enhancement teachers Val Tosoff (striped top) and Christine Seymour (fuchsia coat), along with students at Vedder middle school, look at some of the 500-plus pinch pots on Thursday, June 10 made by the kids to honour the 215 children found at Kamloops Indian Residential School. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress)
Chilliwack students make hundreds of tiny clay pots in honour of 215 Indigenous children

‘I think the healing process has begun,’ says teacher about Vedder middle school project

Image by Free-Photos from Pixabay
Webinar looks at sexual abuse prevention among adolescents

Vancouver/Fraser Valley CoSA hosts free online session on June 15

One person was transported to hospital with minor injuries following a two-vehicle crash on Hot Springs Road June 10. (Adam Louis/Observer)
One hurt following two-vehicle crash on Hot Springs Road

Agassiz Fire Department, B.C. Ambulance Service attended with RCMP

June is Brain Injury Awareness Month in Canada. (ADOBE STOCK IMAGE)
Shining a light on brain injury in Canada

June is Brain Injury Awareness Month

At an outdoor drive-in convocation ceremony, Mount Royal University bestows an honorary Doctor of Laws on Blackfoot Elder and residential school survivor Clarence Wolfleg in Calgary on Tuesday, June 8, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
‘You didn’t get the best of me’: Residential school survivor gets honorary doctorate

Clarence Wolfleg receives honorary doctorate from Mount Royal University, the highest honour the school gives out

A logging truck carries its load down the Elaho Valley near in Squamish, B.C. in this file photo. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chuck Stoody
Squamish Nation calls for old-growth logging moratorium in its territory

The nation says 44% of old-growth forests in its 6,900-square kilometre territory are protected while the rest remain at risk

Flowers and cards are left at a makeshift memorial at a monument outside the former Kamloops Indian Residential School to honour the 215 children whose remains are believed to have been discovered buried near the city in Kamloops, B.C., on Monday, May 31, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
‘Pick a Sunday:’ Indigenous leaders ask Catholics to stay home, push for apology

Indigenous leaders are calling on Catholics to stand in solidarity with residential school survivors by not attending church services

“They will never be forgotten, every child matters,” says Sioux Valley Chief Jennifer Bone in a video statement June 1. (Screen grab)
104 ‘potential graves’ detected at site of former residential school in Manitoba

Sioux Valley Dakota Nation working to identify, repatriate students buried near former Brandon residential school

The Queen Victoria statue at the B.C. legislature was splattered with what looks like red paint on Friday. (Nicole Crescenzi/News Staff)
Queen Victoria statue at B.C. legislature vandalized Friday

Statue splattered with red paint by old growth forest proponents

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

Police cars are seen parked outside Vancouver Police Department headquarters on Saturday, January 9, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Vancouver police officer charged with assault during an arrest in 2019

The service has released no other details about the allegations

Denmark’s Christian Eriksen receives medical attention after collapsing during the Euro 2020 soccer championship group B match between Denmark and Finland at Parken stadium in Copenhagen, Saturday, June 12, 2021. (AP Photo/Martin Meissner, Pool)
Christian Eriksen in stable condition, Euro 2020 match resumes

Eriksen was given chest compressions after collapsing on the field during a European Championship

Most Read