B.C. readies for 'Operation Immunize' as COVID-19 cases continue to mount

12 more British Columbians died with COVID-19 infections overnight

B.C. is readying for what it is calling "Operation Immunize," as new COVID-19 infections continue to accumulate across the province.

"We are planning to be able to put vaccines into arms in the first week of January," provincial health officer Bonnie Henry told media December 3.

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She said that she expects to have two vaccines in early January: the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine and the Moderna vaccine. 

"They're likely to be the only ones that will have early on in 2021," she said.

Henry estimated that there will be six million doses of the Moderna vaccine across Canada by March. Each person getting vaccinated requires two doses. She said that she expected that everyone who wants to be vaccinated can be vaccinated by September.

She said the province's point-person on the initiative, Ross Brown, today joined provincial and federal counterparts in talks to walk through exactly how vaccines will be distributed.

The discussions involved key representatives from the B.C. Centre for Disease Control and others, and were intended "to try and walk through all of those key steps that we're going to need to have in place and understand how to how to facilitate the vaccine delivery, and then immunization processes here in the province, and to anticipate any of the challenges or roadblocks that might come up."

While health officials are looking ahead, COVID-19 continues to ravage the province. 

Overnight, there were 12 more COVID-19-related deaths, for a total of 481 deaths since the first such death was recorded in the province on March 9.

The number of infected individuals sick enough to be in hospital fell for the first time since October 30, as it dropped to 325, from 337 yesterday. The number of people in hospital sick enough to be in intensive care units rose by one to a record 80 people. 

New infections continue to rack up, with 694 new cases identified in the past 24 hours, bringing the total to 35,422 since the first infection was identified on January 28.

Fraser Health continues to be the hardest-hit health region.

Here is the breakdown of where the new infections are located:
• 114 in Vancouver Coastal Health;
• 465 in Fraser Health;
• 10 in Island Health;
• 82 in Interior Health; and
• 23 in Northern Health.

There are 9,103 people actively fighting infections, while 24,928 individuals have recovered. 

Three new outbreaks have taken place at healthcare facilities:
• Baillie House long-term care home in Maple Ridge;
• Gateway House long-term care home in Prince George; and
• University Hospital of Northern B.C. in Prince George.  

Henry did not mention any new declarations that any outbreaks are over. 

That means that there are now eight hospitals in the province with active outbreaks:
• University Hospital of Northern B.C. in Prince George.
• West Coast General Hospital in Port Alberni;
• Saanich Peninsula Hospital in Saanichton;
• Burnaby Hospital in Burnaby;
• Langley Memorial Hospital in Langley;
• Lions Gate Hospital in North Vancouver;
• Ridge Meadows Hospital in Maple Ridge; and
• Surrey Memorial Hospital in Surrey.

In total, there are 56 seniors' living facilities that have active outbreaks, and below is a full breakdown by health region.

There remain 15 active outbreaks at seniors' facilities in the Vancouver Coastal Health region, and they include:
• Arbutus Care Centre in Vancouver;
• Banfield Pavilion, in Vancouver;
• Revera Capilano Care Centre in West Vancouver;
• Columbus Residence in Vancouver;
• German Canadian Care Home in Vancouver;
• Lakeview Care Centre in Vancouver;
• Little Mountain Place in Vancouver;
• Renfrew Care Centre in Vancouver;
• Royal Ascot Care Centre in Vancouver;
• Royal Arch Masonic Home long-term care facility in Vancouver;
• St. Judes Anglican Home in Vancouver;
• Three Links Care Centre long-term care facility in Vancouver;
• Villa Cathay Care Home in Vancouver;
• Windermere Care Centre in Vancouver; and
• Youville Residence in Vancouver.

The 34 outbreaks at seniors' facilities in the ​Fraser Health region now include:
• Agassiz Seniors Community in Agassiz;
• Agecare Harmony Court Estates in Burnaby;
• Agecare Court Estates in Burnaby;
• Al Hogg Pavilion in White Rock;
• Amenida Seniors Community in Surrey;
• Amica White Rock in White Rock;
• Baillie House long-term care home in Maple Ridge;
• Belvedere Care Centre in Coquitlam;
• CareLife Fleetwood in Surrey;
• Chartwell Langley Gardens in Langley;
• Fellburn Care Centre long-term care facility in Burnaby;
• Finnish Manor in Burnaby;
• Fleetwood Villa Retirement Residence in Surrey;
• Fort Langley Seniors Community in Fort Langley;
• George Derby Centre in Burnaby;
• Good Samaritan Delta View Care Centre 2 long-term care facility in Delta;
• Harrison Pointe retirement home in Langley;
• Harrison at Elim Village in Surrey;
• Hawthorne Seniors Care Community long-term care in Port Coquitlam;
• Hawthorne Seniors Care Community assisted living in Port Coquitlam;
• Hollyrood Manor long-term care home in Maple Ridge;
• Jackman Manor in Langley Township;
• Laurel Place long-term care facility in Surrey;
• Menno Home in Abbotsford;
• Morgan Place Care Society in Surrey;
• Northcrest Care Centre in Delta;
• PICS Assisted Living in Surrey;
• Queen's Park Care Centre in New Westminster;
• Sunset Manor in Chilliwack;
• Tabor Home in Abbotsford;
• The Residence at Clayton Heights in Surrey;
• The Residence in Mission;
• Valley Haven Care Home in Chilliwack; and
• White Rock Senior Village in White Rock.

There are three outbreaks at seniors' homes in Northern Health:
• North Peace Seniors Housing Society buildings in Fort St. John;
• Rotary Manor Dawson Creek in Dawson Creek; and
• Gateway House long-term care home in Prince George.

Two outbreaks are at seniors' living facilities in the Island Health region: Tsawaayuss-Rainbow Gardens in Port Alberni and Veterans Memorial Lodge at Broadmead in Victoria.

The Interior Health region has two seniors' facility outbreaks, at Mountainview Village in Kelowna and Sun Pointe Village in Kelowna.

gkorstrom@biv.com

@GlenKorstrom
 

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