What you need to know about COVID-19 in B.C. for Feb. 19


  • A live briefing with B.C. health officials is scheduled for 3 p.m. PT
  • As of Thursday, there were 224 people in hospital with the disease, including 60 in intensive care.
  • There are 4,348 active cases of the novel coronavirus across the province.
  • A total of 1,321 people have died of COVID-19 in B.C. out of 75,327 confirmed cases.
  • To date, 180,691 doses of vaccine have been administered, including 29,952 second doses.

A live briefing on the COVID-19 situation is scheduled for Friday afternoon, when British Columbians can expect to hear questions about the sudden spike in new cases the day before.

In a written statement on Thursday, Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry and Health Minister Adrian Dix announced that 617 new cases had been confirmed in the last 24 hours. The statement did not include an explanation for the abrupt jump from daily numbers that have hovered between 400 and 500 confirmed cases for the last few weeks.

However, Henry and Dix did remind the public of the importance of following public health orders that ban all gatherings in light of recent increases in the Northern Health region and the Lower Mainland.

“We remind everyone about the importance of using all of our layers of protection: maintaining a safe distance from others, washing our hands regularly, staying home when we are ill, using a mask in all public spaces and having robust COVID-19 safety plans in all businesses,” they said.

“We all know what we need to do. Until we have widespread vaccine availability, these small steps make a big difference in helping to keep all of us safe.”

As of Thursday, there were 4,348 active cases of COVID-19 across B.C. Of those, 224 people are in hospital, including 60 in intensive care. Another 7,440 people are being monitoring by public health because of exposure to known cases of the virus.

To date, 1,321 people have died from infection with the novel coronavirus in B.C. out of 75,327 confirmed cases. A total of 69,602 who’ve tested positive have recovered from their illness.

Meanwhile, 180,691 doses of COVID-19 vaccine have been administered in B.C., including 29,952 second doses. 


What’s happening elsewhere in Canada

As of 6:30 p.m. PT Thursday, Canada had reported 837,497 cases of COVID-19, with 32,587 cases considered active.

A total of 21,498 people have died.

What are the symptoms of COVID-19?

Common symptoms include:

  • Fever.
  • Cough.
  • Tiredness.
  • Shortness of breath.
  • Loss of taste or smell.
  • Headache.

But more serious symptoms can develop, including difficulty breathing and pneumonia.

What should I do if I feel sick?

Use the B.C. Centre for Disease Control’s COVID-19 self-assessment tool. Testing is recommended for anyone with symptoms of cold or flu, even if they’re mild. People with severe difficulty breathing, severe chest pain, difficulty waking up or o​​​​​​ther extreme symptoms should call 911.

What can I do to protect myself?

  • Wash your hands frequently and thoroughly. Keep them clean.
  • Keep at least two metres away from people outside your bubble. Keep your distance from people who are sick.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth.
  • Wear a mask in indoor public spaces.
  • Be aware of evolving travel advisories to different regions.

More detailed information on the outbreak is available on the federal government’s website.


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