British Columbia's top doctor says she's confident more COVID-19 restrictions can be lifted next week as planned due to dramatic declines in cases and because the person-to-person transmission rate has dropped.
Dr. Bonnie Henry says fewer infections reflect the power of vaccines, with nearly 73 per cent of eligible residents aged 12 and up having had their first shot.
However, only about eight per cent of those 18 and over have received both doses of a vaccine as the province pushes for more people to register for a second shot.
B.C. is expected to move to the second of its four-step reopening plan next Tuesday, when, among other things, indoor and outdoor personal gatherings of up to 50 people will be allowed.
A return to travel within the province, high-intensity indoor group exercise and team sports are also part of the next step, and Henry says increased contact is expected to cause a rise in manageable clusters of the virus.
There are 153 new cases of COVID-19. There have been 145,996 total cases of COVID in BC. The 7-day rolling case average falls to 161 cases per day. When the restart plan was announced May 25 the rolling average was 329.
Join Dr. Bonnie Henry, BC's provincial health officer, and Adrian Dix, Minister of Health, for an update on COVID-19, including the Province's latest epidemiological modelling. #CovidBC https://t.co/P9Z4iIp27y— BC Government News (@BCGovNews) June 10, 2021
Of the new cases, 21 are in the Vancouver Coastal Health region, 73 are in the Fraser Health region, 11 are in the Island Health region, 39 are in the Interior Health region, and 9 are in the Northern Health region.
There are currently 1,910 active cases of COVID-19 in the province. Of the active cases, 176 individuals are currently hospitalized, 49 of whom are in ICU.
There have been 4 new COVID-19 related deaths, for a total of 1,729 deaths in British Columbia.
British Columbia is projecting COVID will be nearly entirely wiped out by September if vaccination uptake continues to be high and contacts are at 70% of normal.
Dr. Henry with modelling says Grand Forks leads the way in BC with transmission rates by 100k of population at about 16 per 100k. The deaths have remained low throughout the third wave.