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Northern Health sees record increase in COVID-19 cases

More than 300 new cases reported across northern British Columbia on Thursday
COVID map Jan 13
This map shows a breakdown of new COVID-19 cases by local health area for the week on Jan. 2 to Jan. 8. The Prince George area had 402 new cases during that period.

The B.C. Ministry of Health reported 304 new cases of COVID-19 in the Northern Health region on Thursday – the highest single-day increase in cases in the north since the start of the pandemic.

The Northern Health region is home to roughly 300,000 people, according to information reported by the health authority, meaning roughly 0.1 per cent of the entire population of northern B.C. was diagnosed with COVID-19 in a single day.

The Northern Health region has had two consecutive days with record numbers of new cases, with 283 cases reported on Wednesday, according to B.C. Centre for Disease Control data. The previous record was 263 new cases, reported on Jan. 6 this year.

An additional COVID-related death in the Northern Health region was reported on Thursday, bringing the region’s death toll from the pandemic to 281.

As of Thursday, there were 1,231 active COVID-19 cases in the Northern Health region and 17 people were hospitalized with COVID-19 in the region, of which three were listed in intensive care by the B.C. CDC.

During the week of Jan. 2 to Jan. 8, there were 402 new cases of COVID-19 reported in the Prince George local health area, which includes Mackenzie and the Robson Valley.

Since the start of the pandemic, there have been 21,421 cases of COVID-19 in the Northern Health region, of which 19,661 people have recovered.

As of Thursday, nearly 9.9 million doses of COVID-19 vaccine have been administered in B.C., including 440,649 doses in the Northern Health region. According to the B.C. Ministry of Health, 88.9 per cent of eligible British Columbians (ages five and older) have received at least one dose of COVID-19 vaccine and 83.3 per cent have had two shots.

In addition, 31.2 per cent of British Columbian adults have received a third booster dose.

As of Jan. 10, 88 per cent of people aged 12 and older in the Prince George local health area had received at least one dose of COVID-19 vaccine, and 84 per cent had two doses. In addition, 33 per cent of children aged five to 11 years old had received one dose of COVID-19 vaccine in the Prince George area, the B.C. CDC reported.