An Interior Health nurse administers Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccines to seniors and care aids in Kelowna on Tuesday, March 16. (Phil McLachlan/Kelowna Capital News)

An Interior Health nurse administers Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccines to seniors and care aids in Kelowna on Tuesday, March 16. (Phil McLachlan/Kelowna Capital News)

Fraser East sees 282 new cases of COVID-19 in six days

Cases across the province have been increasing

Two weeks of small increases to Fraser East’s COVID-19 case counts show that the region is following the provincial trend towards more viral transmission, even if it’s not seeing as stark an increase as some places.

Between March 18 and March 24, the most recent data available from the BCCDC, the Fraser East health service delivery area saw 282 new cases of COVID-19. This is up nearly 40 cases from two weeks before, although it is down from a high of 452 new cases in the first week of January.

RELATED: New COVID-19 cases declining in Fraser East

(Data from the BCCDC for health service delivery areas is calculated weekly, however, the BCCDC only released numbers for six days. March 18, which saw 52 new cases, was also included in the data for the previous week.)

In line with Fraser East is Fraser North, which is also seeing a small increase in new COVID-19 cases with 655 cases between March 18 and 24. However, Fraser South has been seeing massive increases in its new cases.

Between March 18 and 24, Fraser South saw 1,583 new cases of COVID-19. This averages out to 226 new cases a day. The highest daily count was 271 on Sunday, March 21.

RELATED: Masks now required ‘at all times’ in Surrey school district for grades 4-12

The rate of new COVID cases per 100,000 people, which allows for comparison between communities of different sizes, is showing that Fraser South has the highest transmission in Fraser Health, with 28.8 people out of 100,000 testing positive with COVID-19 every day.

The rates of transmission in Fraser East and Fraser North are significantly lower, although certainly not the lowest in the province. Fraser East is seeing 13.6 people out of 100,000 testing positive for COVID-19 daily, and Fraser North is seeing 14.6 people out of 100,000 testing positive.

RELATED: COVID patients hospitalized with variants of concern more likely to end up in ICU

Across the province, COVID-19 cases are increasing. On Friday, March 26, there were 908 new cases of COVID-19 in B.C., nearing the record set in November when new cases were nearing 1,000 a day.

The data for how many cases were in each of the health service delivery areas for Fraser Health on March 26 has yet to be released. Fraser Health as a whole saw 438 new cases that day.

RELATED: Another 908 COVID-19 cases confirmed in B.C. Friday, nearing record

Vaccine appointments are ramping up across the province. As of Sunday, March 28, seniors aged 73 and up (born 1948 or before) who are living in the Fraser Health or Vancouver Coastal Health regions are able to book their vaccine appointments.

On the Sunshine Coast, Powell River, Whistler, Squamish, Pemberton and Bowen Island, seniors 70 and older were able to book their appointments starting Sunday.

RELATED: Seniors ages 73+ can now book COVID vaccine appointments in Fraser Health, Vancouver Coastal

Indigenous people 55 and older are also able to book their COVID-19 appointments.

Others, including firefighters, police, grocery store employees and education staff, will also be able to get their vaccines in the coming weeks, although those vaccinations will be organized through the individual’s employer, according to the province.

RELATED: B.C. emergency, grocery, school staff get COVID-19 vaccine starting April

Fraser Health residents can book by phone at 1-855-755-2455 or online at www.Fraserhealth.ca/vaccinebooking.



news@ahobserver.com

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