It was another difficult weekend for the Northern Health region in the fight against COVID-19.
Four more people died from COVID-19 over the three-day period and 289 new cases were reported in the region. There have now been 206 total COVID-19 deaths in Northern Health since the pandemic began, with the toll surpassing 200 on Friday (Oct. 22).
There are now 1,042 active cases in Northern Health. Provincial-wide, B.C. saw a total of 1,618 new cases over the past 72 hours and there are now 4,966 active cases in the province.
Of the active cases, 366 individuals are in hospital and 149 are in intensive care. The remaining people are recovering at home in self-isolation.
There were 20 COVID-19 deaths in B.C. over the weekend, including the four in Northern Health, for an overall total of 2,129 since the pandemic began.
There are also now 29 active healthcare facility outbreaks in the province including two at the University Hospital of Northern B.C. in Prince George and the GR Baker Memorial Hospital in Quesnel and Wrinch Memorial Hospital in Hazelton.
Today (Oct. 25) B.C. has lifted much of the capacity restrictions on gatherings across the province, allowing many B.C. residents to attend events like hockey games, concerts and weddings without any limits on numbers, except in the Northern Health Authority.
Northern Health is still under its circuit breaker health orders, as vaccination rates in the region are low.
The health orders were announced in the Northern Health Region on Oct. 14 and remain in place until Nov. 19 and are as follows:
- Personal gatherings, both indoor and outdoor, are restricted to fully vaccinated people, including at private residences and vacation accommodation
- Indoor gathering: up to 5 people are permitted
- Outdoor gathering: up to 25 people are permitted
- All indoor and outdoor organized events require a safety plan and for attendees to wear a mask and present their BC Vaccine Card showing they are fully vaccinated
- Indoor event: up to 50 people are permitted
- Outdoor event: up to 100 people are permitted
- Worship services: virtual services are required
- Fast-food restaurants and unlicensed cafés without table service can provide take-out only or require patrons to present the BC Vaccine card showing they are fully vaccinated.
- Licensed establishments and those with table service must not serve alcohol between 10 p.m.-9 a.m. and must require patrons to present the BC Vaccine Card showing they are fully vaccinated.
- Bars and nightclubs (no meal service) will be closed
- Sport events spectators (indoor and outdoor) are limited to 50 per cent capacity, must have a safety plan, and require attendees to wear masks and present their BC Vaccine Card showing they are fully vaccinated