B-C has reported nearly five-thousand new infections over a three-day period starting Friday. Officials have warned the number of cases may be five times higher because the province has reached its testing capacity. The health ministry says 987 people are in hospital, 129 of which are in intensive care. It says 64 health-care facilities have ongoing outbreaks.
Results of a new survey suggest pandemic fatigue is increasing during the Omicron wave of the pandemic and is taking its toll on Canadians mental health. The poll finds more than one-third of Canadians say they are dealing with mental health issues in recent weeks, with 23 per cent of respondents saying they are depressed. Nearly half of Canadians say they’ve been feeling fatigued, 40 per cent say they’ve been frustrated and 37 per cent say they are feeling anxious. Seven per cent responded they are “barely getting by” when it comes to dealing with the pandemic. That number is more than double at any point since the fall of 2020.
The preliminary results of a ground-penetrating radar search of a former residential school site in B.C.’s Central Interior will be released today. The Williams Lake First Nation chief says the investigation into the former St. Joseph’s Mission Residential School site has been challenging as people recounted stories of abuse. The investigation near Williams Lake was announced last June after radar found what is believed to be hundreds of unmarked graves at a former residential school in Kamloops.
Émilie Castonguay has made Vancouver Canucks history. She’s been named assistant general manager, becoming the first female to hold that role with the team. The Canucks’s said in a statement “She will play a lead role in player contracts and negotiation, managing the collective bargaining agreement, and her voice will be heard in all aspects of hockey operations.” They went on to say “She will be a key member of our leadership team and we are pleased to welcome her to Vancouver.”
All eyes will be on Mayor Doug McCallum as he is scheduled to make his first court appearance today. McCallum was charged with one criminal count of public mischief last month after a report he made to the RCMP that someone had run over his foot in a grocery store parking lot. The mayor will be given written information on the evidence in his case through disclosure and will likely find out what kind of sentence the prosecution is seeking. According to the criminal code, a charge of public mischief involves falsely reporting crimes to the police, resulting in unnecessary investigations. The mayor’s original complaint was made in September, when members of the Surrey Police Vote campaign were outside a Save-on-Foods in South Surrey. McCallum’s court appearance is scheduled for 2 this afternoon, though it’s unclear if he’ll appear in person or via phone.
Pfizer has begun a study comparing its original COVID-19 vaccine with doses specially tweaked to match the hugely contagious Omicron variant. COVID-19 vaccine makers have been updating their shots to better match Omicron in case global health authorities decide the change is needed. Pfizer announced the study today. While Omicron is more likely than previous variants to cause infection even in people who’ve been vaccinated, it’s not yet clear that a change to the vaccine recipe is needed.
British Columbia health officials announced on Tuesday that there have been 1,446 new COVID-19 cases reported over the past 24 hours, bringing the total number of recorded cases in the province to 314,522. In a written statement, Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry and Health Minister Adrian Dix said that there are 32,468 active cases of COVID-19 in the province. Of the active cases, 985 (-2) COVID-positive individuals are currently hospitalized, and 144 (+15) are in intensive care. The remaining people are recovering at home in self-isolation.
New cases and total active cases are broken down by health region as follows:
- Fraser Health: 508 new cases, 14,715 total active cases
- Vancouver Coastal Health: 309 new cases, 7,527 total active cases
- Interior Health: 319 new cases, 7,297 total active cases
- Northern Health: 147 new cases, 1,246 total active cases
- Island Health: 163 new cases, 1,679 total active cases
- Outside of Canada: No new cases, four total active cases
There has been one new COVID-19-related death in British Columbia, for a total of 2,554 deaths in the province.
Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry says the province’s COVID-19 vaccination card program will remain in place until June 30th. Henry says the number of new COVID-19 cases is dipping but hospitalizations are at the highest point of the pandemic, which continues to put a significant strain on the health-care system. She says if hospitalizations and cases decrease, the proof of vaccination program could end earlier than scheduled. The card must be shown by those aged 12 and up to access restaurants, indoor events, fitness centres and other events or facilities.
The COVID-19 pandemic contributed to an average seven-month decline in Canada’s national life expectancy. That’s the largest decrease since the data started being recorded in 1921. Statistics Canada says preliminary data shows national life expectancy was 81.7 years for those born in 2020 — down from age 82.3 the year before. The drop was greater for men, at more than eight months, than for women, at nearly five months. And the largest declines in the country were observed in the six provinces from Quebec west to B-C.
An American study of more than 21-hundred women has shown no association between COVID-19 vaccination status and infection and fertility and pregnancy. Researchers from the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai in New York City gave participants questionnaires about demographic information, social factors, partner’s information, and COVID vaccine and infection status. The results showed that being vaccinated or having been infected with COVID-19 has not been associated with any short-term changes in the probability of conception.
Howie Mandel has a beef with his longtime friend Jay Leno. On the podcast “Howie Mandel Does Stuff,” he tells Leno he should have publicly defended himself in the “Tonight Show” rivalries of decades past, when Leno and David Letterman and then Leno and Conan O’Brien tussled over the plum job of host. Mandel says it bothers him that Leno was cast as the bad guy. But Leno says he got the job because he chose not to whine or complain. Leno hosted “Tonight” for a combined 22 years after Johnny Carson retired.