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

Toronto Public Health nurse Lalaine Agarin makes preparations at Toronto’s mass vaccination clinic, Jan. 17, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Frank Gunn
3 deaths, 234 new cases of COVID-19 in Interior Health over the weekend

One death connected to outbreak at Kamloops’ Royal Inland Hospital, where 20 patients and 28 staff have tested positive

Head Brewer Kody Rosentreter, owner Wes Greve and taproom manager Lisa Deleo celebrated North Basin Brewing’s grand opening Jan. 22 and 23, 2020. (Contributed)
Osoyoos’ first microbrewery celebrates grand opening

The brewery hopes to show that the Okanagan is more than just wine country

Once complete, the Ambrosia in Keremeos will house more than 100 seniors, families and those on disability. (LSCSS photo)
Keremeos affordable housing suites coming along

Once complete, Ambrosia will house more than 100 people

Penticton Search and Rescue completed two rescues in succession of each other Saturday, Jan. 23, 2021 afternoon. (PENSAR / Facebook)
Penticton Search and Rescue members execute back-to-back rescues

PENSAR had barely completed their first rescue of the day when they received a second call

(THE NEWS – files)
Snowy days ahead for the Okanagan and Shuswap

The region could get up to 5 cm by Thursday

Crews with Discovery Channel film as an Aggressive Towing driver moves a Grumman S2F Tracker aircraft around a 90-degree turn from its compound and onto the road on Saturday, Jan. 23, 2021. It was the “most difficult” part of the move for the airplane, one organizer said. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress)
VIDEO: Vintage military plane gets towed from Chilliwack to Greater Victoria

Grumman CP-121 Tracker’s eventual home the British Columbia Aviation Museum on Vancouver Island

Heather Barker. (File)
Manslaughter charge laid in Vernon woman’s 2018 death

Shaun Ross Wiebe, 43, faces manslaughter and assault charges related to the death of Heather Barker

Zaudanawng “Jay-Dan” Maran in his Creston home. Hanging on the wall behind him is a logo of Kachin’s Manaw festival. Photo: Aaron Hemens
From Myanmar to Creston: The story of a refugee

In October 2007, Zaudanawng “Jay-Dan” Maran and his friends encountered a woman being sexually assaulted by two Myanmar soldiers.

Kamloops This Week.
48 COVID-19 cases and one death associated with outbreak at Kamloops hospital

One of the 20 patients infected has died, meanwhile 28 staff with COVID-19 are isolating at home

The City of Vernon is sending a letter to the provincial government to request that church be deemed an essential service amid the pandemic. (Brendan Shykora - Morning Star)
Vernon mayor scolded for revealing stance on making church essential

Coun. Scott Anderson calls Cummings’ actions ‘arrogant’

The scene of a serious crash on Highway 33 in Kelowna that killed one and severely injured two others on June 20, 2018. (File)
Driver found guilty of causing death, injury in 2018 Kelowna crash

Travis Ryan Hennessy will face sentencing at a later date

(Michael Rodriguez - Capital News staff)
Downtown stairwell fire suspicious, Kelowna RCMP say

Crews were called to Gotham Nightclub for a report of a stairwell fire

Rolling seven-day average of cases by B.C. health authority to Jan. 21. Fraser Health in purple, Vancouver Coastal red, Interior Health orange, Northern Health green and Vancouver Island blue. (B.C. Centre for Disease Control)
2nd COVID vaccine doses on hold as B.C. delivery delayed again

New COVID-19 cases slowing in Fraser Health region

Kelowna Mayor Colin Basran addresses media from the front steps of council chambers on March 23. (Michael Rodriguez - Capital News)
Kelowna, West Kelowna still looking to opt-out of speculation tax

Mayors say spec tax has missed the mark, revenue largely coming out of Canadians’ pockets

Most Read