B.C.’s COVID-19 case count has declined so far in 2021, as highest-risk people receive vaccinations. (B.C. Centre for Disease Control)

B.C.’s COVID-19 case count has declined so far in 2021, as highest-risk people receive vaccinations. (B.C. Centre for Disease Control)

B.C. extends COVID-19 gathering restrictions as infections slow down

New cases of variants of concern increasing, Dr. Henry says

The B.C. government is extending its restrictions on gatherings through the rest of February as new variants of COVID-19 continue to show up.

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry said Friday the tight restrictions on gatherings to household groups have to continue until B.C.’s vaccination supply picks up again. While COVID-19 infections have declined significantly in the Lower Mainland, Henry said a major concern is the increase in infections and hospitalization in the Northern and Interior Health regions.

Premier John Horgan said Friday the reduction in vaccine shipments from pharmaceutical makers Pfizer and Moderna was discussed on Thursday’s call with premiers and Prime Minister Justin Trudeau. Shipments are down “for the next number of weeks” but Canada is still expecting to receive four million Pfizer doses and two million from Moderna by the end of March as specified in the contracts, he said.

“We’re going to amend our plan here in B.C. and other provinces will amend their plans, so when the flow of vaccine comes up again in a meaningful way, we’ll be able to start through the various phases that we announced a few weeks ago,” Horgan told CFAX radio in Victoria Feb. 5.

The plan announced in January is for registrations to begin in March for the largest mass vaccination in the province’s history. Starting in April with clinics set up in 172 communities using school gyms, arenas, community and church halls and convention centres, the target remains having four million people vaccinated by the end of September. Vaccinations are to be administered to people by age group, after those 80 and up have been offered protection along with other high-risk people.

RELATED: B.C.’s ‘mass vaccination’ expected to start in April

RELATED: Vaccine makers said no to producing in Canada


@tomfletcherbc
tfletcher@blackpress.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

BC legislatureCoronavirus

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

Just Posted

Items seized by Chilliwack RCMP and Abbotsford Police during a Feb. 23 traffic stop. (RCMP photo)
Police from Chilliwack and Abbotsford seize drugs in traffic stop

Chilliwack RCMP worked with the Abbotsford PD to seize four kilograms of suspected fentanyl

(Black Press file photo)
Chilliwack RCMP looking for man who tried to grab boy near Robertson elementary school

A man in a parked minivan reached out the driver side window as a young boy passed by

Hope’s station house, moved from its original location along the railroad to 111 Old Hope Princeton Way. (Emelie Peacock/Hope Standard)
Some Canadians are finding butter harder than usual, resulting in an avalanche of social media controversy around #buttergate. (Brett Williams/The Observer)
#Buttergate: Concerns around hard butter hit Agassiz and beyond

The first in a three part series on dairy farming, palm oil and Canadian consumers

Health Minister Adrian Dix looks on as Dr. Bonnie Henry pauses for a moment as she gives her daily media briefing regarding COVID-19 for British Columbia in Victoria, B.C. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
7 additional deaths and 542 new COVID-19 cases in B.C.

Provincial health officials reported 18 new COVID-19 cases linked to variants of concern

A sample of guns seized at the Pacific Highway border crossing from the U.S. into B.C. in 2014. Guns smuggled from the U.S. are used in criminal activity, often associated with drug gangs. (Canada Border Service Agency)
B.C. moves to seize vehicles transporting illegal firearms

Bill bans sale of imitation or BB guns to young people

BC Housing minister David Eby is concerned that Penticton council’s decision to close a local homeless shelter will result in a “tent city” similar to this one in Everett, Wa. (Olivia Vanni / Black Press file)
‘Disappointed and baffled’ B.C. housing minister warns of tent city in Penticton

Penticton council’s decision to close a local homeless shelter could create tent city, says David Eby

Photo: Surrey RCMP
Surrey RCMP arrests two boys, age 16, during dial-a-dope investigation in Whalley

Sergeant Elenore Sturko said one boy is ‘alleged to have been in possession of a loaded handgun at the time of his arrest’

A recently published study out of UBC has found a link between life satisfaction levels and overall health. (Pixabay)
Satisfied with life? It’s likely you’re healthier for it: UBC study

UBC psychologists have found those more satisfied with their life have a 26% reduced risk of dying

A vial of some of the first 500,000 of the two million AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine doses that Canada has secured through a deal with the Serum Institute of India in partnership with Verity Pharma at a facility in Milton, Ont., on Wednesday, March 3, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Carlos Osorio - POOL
Federal panel recommends 4-month gap between COVID vaccine doses due to limited supply

The recommendation applies to all COVID-19 vaccines currently approved in Canada

Emergency crews are on scene at Walnut Grove Secondary School after a report of a bomb threat at Walnut Grove Secondary School on March 3, 2021. The school was safely evacuated. (Shane MacKichan/Special to Langley Advance Times)
UPDATE: Bomb threat forces evacuation of Langley high school

Police asked the public to avoid 88th Avenue and Walnut Grove Drive

A vial of Oxford-AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine is pictured at a family doctor office, Thursday, Feb. 25, 2021 in Paris. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP -Christophe Ena
Trudeau ‘optimistic’ that timeline for rollout of COVID vaccines can be accelerated

Canada set to receive more than 6M COVID-19 vaccine dose than initially expected, by end of March

BC Human Rights Tribunal. (The Canadian Press)
Human rights tribunal rejects complaint against Surrey brewery

Tribunal dismisses former worker’s claim he was bullied because of his ethnicity

Most Read