VANCOUVER (NEWS 1130 – The daily COVID-19 case counts continue on a gradual downward trend, but the strain on the healthcare system remains high.
On Friday, B.C. reported 740 new cases in the past day for a total of 129,482 since the pandemic began.
There are 511 patients hospitalized with COVID-19, 174 of whom are in intensive care.
Four more patients have died, for a total of 1,581.
The province says nearly 40 per cent of eligible people in B.C. have received their first dose of a COVID-19 vaccine, with 1,786,722 administered to date. Of those, 90,642 are second doses.
People who have registered for the age-based program who are aged 56 (born in 1965) and up are now being sent booking invitations. That age range is being gradually expanded until everyone aged 50 (born in 1971) and up by the end of next week.
On Friday, Health Canada announced it is pausing distribution of the Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccines.
Health Canada says the recent shipment of the one-dose vaccines were partially processed in the Baltimore plant where 15 million doses may have been compromised.
In a statement, Health Canada says those doses will only be released when “once Health Canada is satisfied that they meet the Department’s high standards for quality, safety and efficacy.”