A B.C. Centre for Disease Control map shows new COVID-19 cases by local health area for the week of April 11-17. (BCCDC image)

A B.C. Centre for Disease Control map shows new COVID-19 cases by local health area for the week of April 11-17. (BCCDC image)

BCCDC says fresh COVID-19 cases down in most Island Health areas

Nanaimo sees its fewest new COVID-19 cases since mid January

The number of new COVID-19 cases in the vast majority of Island Health local areas was down last week over the previous week.

In Nanaimo, last week’s numbers were lower than any other week since mid January.

The B.C. Centre for Disease Control released data Wednesday, April 21, showing new cases by local health authority for the week of April 11-17.

There were 31 new COVID-19 cases reported in Greater Nanaimo over that seven-day period, the fewest since Jan. 10-16 when there were 29 new cases.

Greater Victoria was the hot spot on the Island for total new cases last week with 103 (down from 131), though Vancouver Island West, doubling from one to two new cases, had the most new cases per capita.

After Victoria, the areas of the Island with the highest numbers of new cases were Sooke and Western Communities with 50, Nanaimo with 31, Oceanside with 19 (way down from last week’s spike to 65) and Saanich Peninsula and the Comox Valley with 18 each.

The central Island’s new case count has been in single digits for five of the past seven days. Island Health says there are now 307 active COVID-19 cases on Vancouver Island, with 84 on the central Island, 188 on the south Island and 35 on the north Island. BCCDC data shows four COVID-19 patients in critical care on Vancouver Island and another 31 hospitalized.

At a press conference Thursday, April 22, provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry said there were 1,006 new COVID-19 cases provincewide including 37 new cases on Vancouver Island.

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She asked British Columbians to stay local, keep distanced, wear masks, follow COVID-19 safety plans in schools and workplaces, stick to household groups, avoid non-essential travel and get vaccinated.

“This is what will protect our loved ones, our communities and each other,” she said.

Henry added that the number of COVID-19 patients who are hospitalized and in intensive care units is rising and is “alarming” to public health officials.

“The pressure on our health-care system is immense right now and our health-care workers need our help,” she said.

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READ ALSO: B.C. COVID-19 hotspots targeted as AstraZeneca vaccine runs low

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