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COVID pandemic claims another life in the north

Vaccination registration open to all adults, NH booking appointments for those 60+
29 COVID dashboard 04232021
The B.C. Centre for Disease Control's COVID-19 dashboard shows the latest pandemic information for the Northern Health region.

The COVID-19 pandemic claimed another life in the Northern Health region, according to data released by the B.C. Centre for Disease Control.

The region's death toll from the pandemic reached 137 on Friday, the B.C. CDC reported.

"There have been four new COVID-19 related deaths, for a total of 1,554 deaths in British Columbia," provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry and Health Minister Adrian Dix said in a joint statement released Friday. "Our condolences are with the family, friends and caregivers of the people who have died as a result of COVID-19."

The B.C. CDC reported 39 new cases in the region on Friday. The number of active cases in the north grew by five, to 224. Twenty people in the region were hospitalized with COVID, including eight in critical care.

Since the start of the pandemic, there have been 6,976 cases of COVID-19 in the Northern Health region, of which 6,605 people have recovered.

There were a total of 1,001 new cases of COVID-19 in the province reported on Friday.

"There are 8,842 active cases of COVID-19 in the province, with 12,608 people under public health monitoring as a result of identified exposure to known cases," Henry and Dix said. "Of the active cases, 486 individuals are currently hospitalized with COVID-19, 160 of whom are in intensive care."

Since the start of the pandemic there have been a total of 123,758 cases of COVID-19 in B.C.

"In B.C., 1,542,066 doses of Pfizer-BioNTech, Moderna and AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccines have been administered, 88,663 of which are second doses," Henry and Dix said.

A total of 80,157 doses of COVID-19 vaccine had been administered in the region, 77,210 people had received their first dose and 2,947 their second.

As of Friday at noon, everyone age 18 and up can register online at getvaccinated.gov.bc.ca to be notified when they can book a COVID-19 vaccination appointment. Residents can also register by calling 1-833-838-2323 between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m., seven days a week.

Currently Northern Health is booking vaccination appointments for people 60 years old and older (and all Indigenous adults) in Prince George.

On Friday afternoon the B.C. Pharmacy Association reported that only two pharmacies in the province, one in Abbotsford and one in Surrey, are still booking appointments for the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine. The fridge-stable vaccine was available to anyone 40 years old or older in B.C.

"The demand for AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine has exceeded the current supply available in B.C. pharmacies," a statement on the association's website said. "All the current AstraZeneca vaccine supply is expected to be fully used by next week. There are currently no appointment bookings available at pharmacies participating in the COVID-19 vaccination program."