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

Keremeos’ heritage Grist Mill and Gardens. (Brennan Phillips - Keremeos Review)
Keremeos’ Grist Mill looking forward to restrictions easing with exclusive concert planned

Juno Award-winning folk artist Valdy is set to take the stage

Letter writer says COVID has created lots of newbie cyclists who don't know rules of cycling. (File photo)
LETTER: Newbie cyclists in Penticton need lessons on rules of the road

Penticton cycling group just received city funding, should give back by offering how-to lessons

No dental coverage for low income Canadians. (File photo)
OPINION: Penticton MP’s proposal for universal dental coverage rejected

One in 3 Canadians have no dental coverage, with COVID making it even worse

The weekly COVID-19 map for June 6 to 12. (BC CDC)
South Okanagan sees only 5 new cases in last week

The Similkameen Valley went a second week without any new cases

Sandra Krauer, Penticton Mayor John Vassilaki and Barb Hoolaeff were in Skaha Park to announce the return of Ribfest for September, 2021. (Brennan Phillips - Western News)
Ribfest returns to Penticton

Festival runs from Sept. 17 - 19 at Skaha Lake Park with proceeds going to new splash park

Bear wanders Kelowna on June 15. (Michelle Wallace/Facebook)
Bear climbs fence, uses crosswalk in Kelowna

The bear was spotted on Baron Road Wednesday evening

Hundreds of people, young and old, joined the three-day Walking Our Spirits Home procession, honouring residential school survivors, those who never made it home and all those affected by the institutions. Here people walk the third portion on June 13. (Martha Wickett - Salmon Arm Observer)
Walking Our Spirits Home from Kamloops provides path to healing

First Nations in and beyond Secwépemc territory join in to honour residential school survivors

More flames
UPDATE: Lake Country home destroyed in massive blaze

Fire crews are responding to 10839 Hallam Drive

(Facebook/Kelowna Cabs)
Kelowna Cabs reaches tentative agreement with dispatchers union

The tentative agreement could help end the dispute between the taxi company and the dispatchers

FILE – A science class at L.A. Matheson Secondary in Surrey, B.C. on March 12, 2021. (Lauren Collins/Surrey Now Leader)
Teachers’ union wants more COVID transmission data as B.C. prepares for back-to-school

BCTF says that details will be important as province works on plan for September

A boat sharing service is extending to Summerland. The company, Penticton Boat Club and Rentals, is also taking over the boat rentals at Summerland Waterfront Resort. (Photo by Chris Stenberg)
Boat sharing service extended from Penticton to Summerland

Company will also operate boat rentals at Summerland Waterfront Resort

201 First Street West 1980s. Prior revitalization. (Photo from Revelstoke Museum and Archives)
Man who redesigned downtown Revelstoke honoured with lifetime achievement award

Robert Inwood has worked on historical projects across the province

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry outlines B.C.’s COVID-19 restart plan, May 25, 2021, including larger gatherings and a possible easing of mandatory masks on July 1. (B.C. government photo)
B.C. records 120 new COVID-19 cases, second vaccines accelerating

Lower Pfizer deliveries for early July, Moderna shipments up

Most Read