21 COVID-19 deaths in B.C; 522 new cases | iNFOnews | Thompson-Okanagan's News Source

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21 COVID-19 deaths in B.C; 522 new cases

B.C. health minister Adrian Dix speaks to reporters, Dec. 10, 2020 as provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry look on.
Image Credit: SUBMITTED / Province of B.C.
December 15, 2020 - 4:07 PM

The second wave of the COVID-19 pandemic continues in B.C. with 21 deaths and 522 new cases of the disease in the past 24 hours.

B.C. also began giving the first COVID-19 vaccinations today, Dec. 15, according to a joint statement from provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry and health minister Adrian Dix.

"Today is a momentous day in our province with the start of our first COVID-19 vaccine clinics,” the statement reads. “With immunizations now underway, those who are most vulnerable to severe illness have one more layer of protection that will get stronger as each new person gets immunized.”

The 522 new cases reported today add to the provincial total of 43,463 since the start of the pandemic.

There are 9,860 active cases in B.C., with 361 people currently hospitalized, 93 of whom are in intensive care. The rest are recovering at home in self-isolation.

There is a community cluster at Big White Ski Resort, and one new community outbreak at the Teck Resource's Elkview and Fording River operations.

READ MORE: 60 COVID-19 cases now linked to Big White Ski Resort

There are 84 new cases in the Vancouver Coastal Health region, 338 new cases in the Fraser Health region, seven in the Island Health region, 56 in the Interior Health region, 37 in the Northern Health region and no new cases of people who reside outside of Canada.

"Even as we look to brighter days ahead, we must remember that the pandemic is far from over,” the joint statement said. “This is why, as we enter this next stage, using our layers of protection and following all of the public health orders is more important than ever.

"No one wants to experience the tragedy of losing a loved one when this day of hope is upon us.”

To contact a reporter for this story, email Howard Alexander or call 250-309-5343 or email the editor. You can also submit photos, videos or news tips to the newsroom and be entered to win a monthly prize draw.

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