Coronavirus Canada updates: B.C. at ‘precipice’ as modelling data shows ‘dramatic increase’ in cases among young populations

Coronavirus Canada Updates: B.C. reports 435 cases, 4 related deaths
Coronavirus Canada Updates: B.C. reports 435 cases, 4 related deaths

For the eighth time throughout the pandemic, B.C. health officials provided their latest data that they’ve gathered to understand how COVID-19 has been spreading in the province.

As of late, officials have seen a “dramatic increase” in cases among those between 20-39 years old, said provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry. Ever since mid-July, health officials have especially warned against large gatherings, especially where alcohol is involved; it has resulted in a spike in cases and COVID-19 exposure warnings throughout the province.

As of Thursday, the province has a record-high 1,175 active cases of COVID-19.

“We still have it in our hands, in our actions to bend our curve back down,” said Henry. “And that is what we need to focus on now. We’re at that limit. We’re at that precipice, if you will, where we need to take the actions to ensure that we can move forward into the fall and keep our curve low.”

Henry noted there has also been a small increase in cases among slightly older populations, but the median age of a COVID-19 patient in the province is now 41, compared to it being in the mid-50s in the earlier stages of the pandemic.

Household transmission continues to be relevant throughout all stages of the pandemic, but in the latest stage, officials have seen a significant increase in transmission at restaurants, bars and lounges as well as private parties and events. Those settings have been particularly associated with the younger demographics.

“This should come as no surprise,” said Henry. “We’ve been reporting on the Kelowna cluster, for example, which has been associated with a variety of these settings.”

Henry said that there has also been transmission in workplace settings. However, there hasn’t been many instances where COVID-19 has spread from the workplace to the public.

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