B.C. Centre for Disease Control’s public health survey had nearly 400,000 people participate. (B.C. government)

B.C.’s COVID-19 community infection rate held below 1%

Survey finds widespread worry about pandemic impact

B.C.’s efforts to flatten the COVID-19 pandemic curve continue to be successful, but the restrictions are having a significant effect on residents as they drag on into the summer.

Those are among the findings of the health ministry’s survey of nearly 400,000 people, and the latest modelling from the B.C. Centre for Disease Control.

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry and Health Minister Adrian Dix released the modelling results and survey data July 20, showing that the summer reopening of the economy has led to only a few additional confirmed coronavirus infections in June and early July. They warn that the small number of cases so far makes it difficult to project how the rest of the summer will unfold, as travel picks up around the province and from outside it.

The case numbers show that community COVID-19 infection rates have stayed below one per cent, and antibody testing shows less than one per cent of the population has been exposed. As with other regions, the BCCDC estimates that the actual number of infections is about eight times the reported cases.

Henry said public health officials expected to see increased cases, but the risk for B.C. now is that clusters of infection are showing up after gatherings in restaurants, bars, house parties and houseboats.

“It might be a small group one night and a different small group the next time, and those are the environments where this virus can be passed on,” Henry said, adding B.C. still does have “the possibility of explosive growth unless we’re careful.”

The most recent case results are a concern, with 102 positive tests recorded from July 17-20, Henry said.

RELATED: B.C. records 102 new cases, no deaths since Friday

RELATED: B.C.’s COVID-19 deficit could go deeper than $12.5B

The survey reflects the employment impacts measured so far, as B.C. families with children report a greater mental health and economic burden than the broader population. B.C. residents aged 18 to 29 also report greater mental health and economic effects, as they face the highest unemployment rate.

The survey finds that four out of five B.C. residents approve of the province’s response to the pandemic, with 96 per cent reporting they practice preventive personal hygiene such as hand washing and physical distance.


@tomfletcherbc
tfletcher@blackpress.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Coronavirus

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

QUIZ: How much do you know about British Columbia?

On this B.C. Day long weekend, put your knowledge of our province to the test

Nanaimo-Ladysmith students will be going back to school full time in the fall in ‘learning groups’

Nanaimo Ladysmith Public Schools to submit back-to-school plan to ministry in August

LMS hosts virtual Kids’ Pirate Event in late August

Kids’ Pirate Event will feature five days of online content

Milestone Equipment Contracting on the job of Chemainus Road Corridor Upgrade

Project intricacies will now start to take shape in the weeks ahead

Starvation claims Great Blue Heron in Crofton

No other contributing factors found in death during a necropsy

Crews work overnight to try to put out wildfire on Pender Island

Fire department and B.C. Wildfire Service crews extinguishing fire in ‘extremely difficult terrain’

Cooler days help crews fighting fire on mountainside southwest of Nanaimo

Firefighters making progress, but it’s ‘slow-going,’ says B.C. Wildfire Service

Crews work overnight to try to put out wildfire on Pender Island

Fire department and B.C. Wildfire Service crews extinguishing fire in ‘extremely difficult terrain’

Michael Buble among 13 British Columbians to receive Order of B.C.

Ceremony will be delayed to 2021 due to COVID-19

U.S. border communities feel loss of Canadian tourists, shoppers and friends

Restrictions on non-essential travel across the Canada-U.S. border have been in place since March 2`

Rollout of COVID-19 Alert app faces criticism over accessibility

App requires users to have Apple or Android phones made in the last five years, and a relatively new operating system

Alleged impaired driver sparks small wildfire near Lytton after crash: B.C. RCMP

Good Samaritans prevented the blaze from getting out of control

Most Read