COVID-19: After brief dip, cases in B.C. hospital climb again

A closer look at the province's latest COVID-19 statistics, including hospitalizations, is a reminder that the pandemic is not over yet. Global's Keith Baldrey reports.

British Columbia reported another increase in the number of people with COVID-19 in the province’s hospitals and intensive care units on Thursday.

The update came a week after B.C. reported its first decline in COVID-19 cases in hospital in weeks.

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According to the BC Centre for Disease Control, there were 596 patients with COVID-19 in hospital, an increase of 46, and 54 patients in ICUs, an increase of 15. Under B.C.’s “census” reporting model, all positive cases are counted regardless of the reason the patient was admitted to hospital.

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Officials also reported 1,987 new confirmed cases of the virus. However, with just 25,496 PCR tests performed over the last week, the figure is likely a significant undercount.

British Columbia’s new weekly data reporting regime also provides information on hospital admissions, though with a one-week delay.

According to the BCCDC, 331 people were admitted to B.C. hospitals with COVID-19 between May 1 and May 7.

That number, however, is provisional and expected to rise with more data collection. In its last report, the province detailed 375 admissions between April 24 and April 30, a figure that has been revised up to 434.

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The latest report also details 59 deaths over the last week, a figure that comes with its own caveat.

The province’s new “all cause mortality” reporting on fatalities now includes anyone who died in the last week who tested positive for COVID-19 over the past 30 days.

The province acknowledges this method may overcount deaths and has pledged “retrospective evaluations” to “better understand true COVID-19 mortality,” but has yet to publicly release any such report.

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