|British Columbia's Public Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry|
provided a review of pandemic data on Thursday to chart the
path of the COVID-19 virus and how the province responded to it
Yesterday's COVID 19 update from Dr. Bonnie Henry and Health Minister Adrian Dix included an extended look at the pathway of the pandemic through the first five months of 2020 and while the Northwest had expressed some grave concerns about the potential impact for the region, the data review up to May 31st indicates that the virus did not have a strong presence along the Highway 16 corridor.
Of the 64 confirmed cases reported by the Northern Health Authority, only 14 were recored across the Northwest region, and in the period from May 18th to May 31st no cases were recorded in the entire Northern Health Authority region.
The data which was compiled by the British Columbia Centre for Disease Control, outlined the route that the coronavirus took to arrive in the province and many will be surprised to learn that the largest pathway into BC was by way of Europe and Eastern Canada and not through Asia as many in the province believed.
The second largest source of the COVID-19 coronavirus came from exposure through Washington State, which had the largest impact on the Lower Mainland region.
When it comes to the dominant strain of the virus for the Northern Health region, it was the European/Eastern Canada version that had the widest spread, with little in the way of exposure from Asian sources.
Not surprisingly, the heavily populated areas of Vancouver and the Fraser Valley provided for the largest volume of COVID related cases, followed by the Okanagan and Interior region, both the Northern Health and Vancouver Island Health Authority regions fared much better when it came to case counts and impact on population through May.
The introduction of the European/Eastern Canada strain of the virus was accelerated during a convention in Vancouver in April which saw a number of participants infected and become contact carriers.
As of today, the results for Northern Health remain on a positive trend, with No New cases and No hospitalizations listed and all 64 reported case from the COVID-19 pandemic listed as recovered.
One are of the Thursday review that will be of importance for parents and guardians comes with the data on the susceptibility of children to infection.
With Dr. Henry noting that the partial reopening of schools this month will have a minimal impact on transmission in the short term, providing vulnerable adults maintain physical distancing.
The value of the modelling program will assist Dr. Henry and Minister Dix to plan accordingly towards the future plans for loosening the measures in place, with a reminder as part of the Thursday presentation to continue on with the current guidelines to help keep the provincial situation on the current path of progress.
An online presentation of the modelling from the BC CDC provides a range of charts and background information on the data through the first five months, you can review those notes here.
You can review the full presentation from the Province from the BC government's Facebook archive.
For a wider overview of the COVID-19 response in BC see our archive page here.
More themes related to Northern Health can be explored here.