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Almost 7,000 new COVID-19 cases over the weekend; 1,249 in Island Health

B.C. is reporting almost 7,000 new cases of COVID-19 over the three days starting Friday, including 1,249 in the Island Health region.
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The Omicron variant of COVID-19 is fuelling a surge in new cases in B.C., which reported 6,966 new cases over the weekend. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP, NIAID-RML

B.C. is reporting almost 7,000 new cases of COVID-19 over the three days starting Friday, including 1,249 in the Island Health region.

There are now 34,551 active cases in the province, including 3,821 in Island Health, driven by spread of the highly transmissible Omicron variant.

Fraser Health had the highest number of new cases at 2,672.

There are now 431 individuals in hospital with COVID-19 in B.C., including 95 in intensive care.

Another seven people died related to the virus over the weekend, none of whom were in Island Health.

Public health officials have said the daily case counts have become a less-reliable measure of the prevalence of the virus, as many people are isolating at home without any formal test results, and not all results from rapid tests are reported to public health.

With testing in the province at capacity, people with mild illness are being advised to stay home and isolate at least five days, or until symptoms abate and there’s no fever.

On Friday, B.C. reported 33,184 active cases, including 3,906 on the Island.

On Monday, 83 per cent of those age five and older eligible for a COVID vaccine were fully immunized. That number jumps to 89 per cent for those age 12 and older. Of that group, 25 per cent have received their booster shots.

The province also reported seven new health-care facility outbreaks Monday for a total of 43 in the province.

An outbreak on a fourth-floor unit at Victoria General Hospital has been declared over.

In Island Health, there are ongoing outbreaks in seven long-term care homes: Amica Douglas House, Aberdeen Hospital, Eden Gardens, Glenwarren Lodge, Kiwanis Village Lodge, Selkirk Seniors Village and Clover Point Care.

Over the two weeks from Dec. 24 to Jan. 6, the number of COVID-19 cases hospitalized per 100,000 population after adjusting for age was 35.5 not vaccinated, 10.2 partially vaccinated, and 5.3 fully vaccinated.

ceharnett@timescolonist.com