B.C. reports 5 fewer people in hospital with COVID-19, 2 more in the ICU

B.C. health officials reported 329 people in hospital with COVID-19 on Wednesday, including 37 in intensive care, as the province recorded 216 new cases.

The new numbers represent a decrease of five COVID-19 patients hospitalized within the last 24 hours and two more patients in the ICU.

Information about recent deaths from COVID-19 will be released on Thursday. The province said at a news conference Tuesday it was expanding the method of counting COVID-related deaths to include mortality from all causes in anyone who has had a positive COVID-19 test within 30 days of death in order to provide a more accurate count.

Overall hospitalizations, which typically lag behind spikes and dips in new cases, are up by 19 per cent from last Wednesday, when 276 people were in hospital with the disease and down about 27 per cent from a month ago when 449 people were in hospital. 

The number of patients in intensive care is down by about 14 per cent from 43 a week ago and down by 41 per cent from a month ago when 63 people were in the ICU.

As of Wednesday, 7.3 per cent of COVID-19 tests in B.C. are coming back positive, according to the province’s COVID-19 dashboard. The number had been above 20 per cent though most of January but began to fall in February and through the first half of March, along with hospitalizations. 

Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry has said anything above a five per cent test-positivity rate is an indicator of a more worrying level of transmission.

There have been 357,974 confirmed cases to date.

There are a total of 11 active outbreaks in assisted living, long-term, and acute care facilities.

Acute care outbreaks include:

  • Burnaby Hospital.
  • Cowichan District Hospital.

As of Wednesday, 90.9 per cent of those five and older in B.C. had received their first dose of a COVID-19 vaccine and 87.5 per cent a second dose.

A total of 2.7 million people have received a booster shot to date.

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