The were 15 new cases of COVID-19 recorded in Penticton from Dec. 27 to Jan. 2, according to data released Thursday, Jan. 7, 2020 by the BC Centre for Disease Control. (BC CDC)

The were 15 new cases of COVID-19 recorded in Penticton from Dec. 27 to Jan. 2, according to data released Thursday, Jan. 7, 2020 by the BC Centre for Disease Control. (BC CDC)

Weekly COVID-19 cases drop in half in Penticton, rise elsewhere in South Okanagan

There were 205 cases recorded in Penticton throughout 2020

COVID-19 cases in Penticton are on the decline compared to recent weeks. However, elsewhere in the South Okanagan COVID-19 cases have risen.

The BC Centre for Disease Control is reporting 15 new cases of COVID-19 in Penticton between Dec. 27 and Jan. 2. This is over a 50 per cent decrease from the 31 cases reported between Dec. 20 and 26.

The weekly numbers had been hovering around the 30 mark throughout most of December. The weekly numbers were at their highest in Penticton Nov. 30 to Dec. 5., when the city recorded 50 new cases of the virus.

The BC CDC also released cumulative case totals by local health areas for all of 2020 today (Jan. 7). There were 205 cases of COVID-19 recorded in Penticton in 2020, according to the data.

The BC CDC released COVID-19 data by local health authority for all of 2020 Thursday, Jan.7 2021. (BC CDC)

The BCCDC began providing weekly COVID-19 case updates for local health areas throughout the province in early December.

The health areas in the South Okanagan are identified as Penticton, Keremeos, and the South Okanagan (Oliver and Osoyoos).

In Keremeos, there was one new case of COVID-19 from Dec. 27 to Jan. 2. Keremeos has registered one new case for multiple consecutive weeks.

In the South Okanagan area, encompassing Oliver and Osoyoos, there were 27 new cases registered from Dec. 27 to Jan. 2, up nearly two-fold compared to the 15 reported in the previous week.

A handful of the cases can be attributed to outbreaks at two long-term care homes in Oliver. McKinney Place care home reported two new cases in staff yesterday (Jan. 6). The total number of cases at the care home is now 77, there have been 13 deaths connected to the outbreak.

READ MORE: Two more COVID-19 cases at Oliver care home

There was also a new outbreak declared at a second Oliver care home Jan. 6. Four staff — but no residents — have tested positive for the virus at Sunnybank Retirement Home. Interior Health says there is no indication of any connection between the McKinney Place and Sunnybank outbreaks.

Across the province, cases continue to be prevalent with 625 more cases reported yesterday (Jan. 6).

Provincial public health orders are set to expire tomorrow (Jan. 8). An announcement is expected to be made tomorrow by provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry.

COVID-19 cases by local health area across the province from Dec. 27 to Jan. 2. (BC CDC)

READ MORE: B.C. records 625 more COVID-19 cases as holiday results come in

READ MORE: Second long-term care outbreak in Oliver



jesse.day@pentictonwesternnews.com

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