As approval of the COVID-19 vaccine for younger kids seems imminent in Canada, a Vancouver doctor says combatting misinformation while addressing parental concerns will be crucial to a successful rollout. The U.S. began giving shots to children ages 5 to 11 yesterday, less than 24 hours after kid-sized doses of the Pfizer vaccine were approved. One Doctor expects the approval in Canada to come in the next few weeks and urges parents to do their research and most importantly to get their information from reliable sources.
Surrey RCMP say foul play is not suspected in the disappearance of a young Surrey couple. However, Mounties would like to speak to the pair to confirm their well-being. In a news release issued Tuesday morning, RCMP requested the public’s assistance in locating Matthew Sawatzky and Janaye Sawatzky (nee Sears). The newlyweds were last seen at a residence near 145th and 67A Avenue around 9 a.m. on Oct. 31. Police say “The investigation is still ongoing. but don’t believe foul play or criminality is a factor in this. It does appear that the couple left on their own accord,’
Britain is the first country to grant a conditional authorization to drugmaker Merck’s coronavirus antiviral, the first pill shown to successfully treat COVID-19. The pill is licensed for adults 18 and older who have tested positive for COVID-19 and have at least one risk factor for developing severe illness, such as obesity or heart disease. The antiviral pill reduces symptoms and speeds recovery, and could help to curb outbreaks in poorer countries with fragile health systems.
A record spending surge in Canadian health care is expected to reach 308-billion dollars this year due to COVID-19. According to the Canadian Institute for Health Information, that’s roughly eight-thousand dollars per Canadian. The numbers add up to a troubling future as Canada works to recover from the pandemic and get health systems back on their feet.
Canada has joined the United States, United Kingdom and 21 other countries in a historic deal to stop new direct public finance for coal, oil and gas development. The group wants to shift investment to renewable energy. Federal Natural Resources Minister Jonathan Wilkinson attending the COP-26 conference in Scotland says it’s a big deal. Climate activists welcomed the agreement.
The latest data on COVID-19 in the province shows nearly half of the deaths last month were among residents who were fully vaccinated. Eighty-two of the 189 people who died in October due to the virus were fully immunized _ including 47 who were 80 years of age or older. Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry says age is the top risk factor for COVID breakthrough infections and a large number are in communal living or multi-generational homes. The virus continues to have a much less serious impact on children but cases are rising among those aged 5 to 11 with 550 confirmed this week.
Premier John Horgan has confirmed that a biopsy shows a growth in his throat is cancerous. The biopsy was performed last week after the growth was located when Horgan reported a lump in his neck. The statement released today says Horgan begins radiation treatment in a couple of weeks and expects it will end by late next month. Horgan says his prognosis is excellent and he expects a full recovery but will participate virtually in briefings, cabinet meetings, and other important gatherings _ like the Council of the Federation _ while he’s undergoing radiation.
The B-C Wildfire Service says the estimated cost of battling this summer’s wildfires has reached 565-million dollars _ making the fire season a bad one, but far from the worst on record. The wildfire service has released a summary of 2021 B-C wildfire season _ which saw just over 16-hundred fires scorch almost 87-hundred square kilometres of land between April 1st and the end of the September. Drought conditions across the southern Interior, an unprecedented heat dome that inflicted record-breaking temperatures on the entire province and widespread, frequent lightning storms are blamed for creating explosive fire conditions that fuelled blazes, including the June 29th fire that destroyed the Village of Lytton and killed two people. The wildfire service summary says 2021 was “tremendously challenging,” but it hasn’t bumped 2017 from the title of all-time worst fire season when 649-million dollars was spent battling blazes that burned 12-thousand square kilometres of land
For the second time in less than a month, a pedestrian has been hit and killed while walking along Highway 1 in Abbotsford. Police say it happened last night just before 8 p.m. as the unnamed person walked in the eastbound lanes of the busy route. The driver stayed at the scene and few other details have been released. A pedestrian walking in the westbound lands of the highway in roughly the same area was hit by a transport truck on October 20th and died a short time later.
BC health officials announced 596 new COVID-19 cases on Thursday, bringing the total number of recorded cases in the province to 207,716. In a written statement, Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry and Health Minister Adrian Dix said that there are 4,451 active cases of COVID-19 in the province. Of the active cases, 438 individuals are currently in hospital, 130 of whom are in intensive care. The remaining people are recovering at home in self-isolation.
New cases and total active cases, broken down by health region, are as follows:
- Fraser Health: 222 new cases, 1,927 total active cases
- Vancouver Coastal Health: 46 new cases, 565 total active cases
- Interior Health: 115 new cases, 666 total active cases
- Northern Health: 159 new cases, 616 total active cases
- Island Health: 54 new cases, 618 total active cases
- Outside of Canada: No new cases, 59 total active cases
There have been eight COVID-19-related deaths over the past 24 hours, for a total of 2,200 deaths in BC. This includes three in Fraser Health, two in Vancouver Coastal Health, and three in Northern Health. From October 27 to November 2, people not fully vaccinated accounted for 64.5% of cases, and from October 20 to November 2, they accounted for 71.8% of hospitalizations.
Past week cases (October 27 to November 2) – Total 3,532
- Not vaccinated: 2,096 (59.3%)
- Partially vaccinated: 182 (5.2%)
- Fully vaccinated: 1,254 (35.5%)
Past two weeks cases hospitalized (October 20 to November 2) – Total 447
- Not vaccinated: 293 (65.5%)
- Partially vaccinated: 28 (6.3%)
- Fully vaccinated: 126 (28.2%)
Past week, cases per 100,000 population after adjusting for age (October 27 to November 2)
- Not vaccinated: 269.4
- Partially vaccinated: 62.7
- Fully vaccinated: 29
Past two weeks, cases hospitalized per 100,000 population after adjusting for age (October 20 to November 2)
- Not vaccinated: 56.4
- Partially vaccinated: 13.9
- Fully vaccinated: 2.8
To date, 90.1% of all eligible people 12 and over have received their first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine; 85.6% have received their second dose.