COVID-19 at UBC: Campus case rate hits zero as capacity limits removed

There was less than one daily case of COVID-19 per 100,000 residents in the UBC area last week, according to new data released by the British Columbia Centre for Disease Control (BCCDC).

Testing positivity rate was less than one, said the BCCDC. Meanwhile, 96 per cent of area residents have received one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine, while 94 per cent have been fully immunized.

However, the BCCDC dashboard includes a disclaimer indicating that these rates do not include students and staff that live in other local jurisdictions.

Lower Mainland cases remain concentrated in the Fraser Valley. The Fraser Health health region recorded the most cases in the past week, representing nearly one-third of the total COVID-19 positive cases in the province. The North Chilliwack region has the highest case rate in Fraser Health.

Provincially, the Nisga’a Nation — located in the Northern Health authority — has the highest average case rate at 215 daily cases per 100,000 residents. After Nisga’a, the second highest rate is in Burns Lake, with 87 daily cases per 100,000.

However, the BCCDC has reported misleading data on multiple occasions in the past month.

The rolling average number of cases province-wide was roughly 640 per day as of October 20, where it has been hovering since August. Quite notably, the largest share of cases has been within the 20-29 age group. 365 people are currently hospitalized with COVID-19 across the province, 142 of whom are in intensive care.

COVID-19-related deaths have been increasing as well, with 21 recorded this past weekend.

This deadly weekend comes as BC enters the third phase of its vaccine card program. British Columbians are now required to be fully vaccinated to enter certain non-essential businesses and attend indoor events.

The province has also decided to remove capacity limits on indoor events as well as anti-mingling restrictions, meaning that restaurants, nightclubs, theatre and sporting events can now operate at full capacity.

Finally, the provincial health office has announced that it will be providing vaccine booster shots to BC’s entire population, to be administered roughly six to eight months after residents receive their second dose. The province promises this program will be fully rolled out by May 2022.