Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry and Health Minister Adrian Dix update B.C.’s COVID-19 situation at the B.C. legislature, April 29, 2021. (B.C. government)

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry and Health Minister Adrian Dix update B.C.’s COVID-19 situation at the B.C. legislature, April 29, 2021. (B.C. government)

B.C.’s COVID-19 case count creeps up, seven more deaths

445 people in hospital, 157 in intensive care

B.C.’s COVID-19 infection rate and serious illness remained nearly stable as of Friday, with 722 new cases confirmed and seven additional deaths.

There are 445 people in hospital, down from 457 in the past 24 hours, and 157 in intensive care, up from 154 on Thursday. The major pressure on hospitals continues to be in the Lower Mainland, which has begun delaying scheduled surgeries to free up beds and staff for treating COVID-19 patients.

“Since we last reported, we have had 115 new cases of COVID-19 in the Vancouver Coastal Health region, 523 new cases in the Fraser Health region, 20 in the Island Health region, 38 in the Interior Health region, 26 in the Northern Health region and no new cases of people who reside outside of Canada,” Health Minister Adrian Dix and provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry said in a statement May 7.

B.C. has reached 45 per cent of eligible adults with a COVID-19 vaccine, and the age-based program is now booking appointments for people aged 49 and older, going down further next week as bigger shipments of Pfizer vaccine arrive. Anyone aged 18 or older can register to enter the queue to be notified when their age group is eligible.

Public health clinics are being set up in 35 hot-spot areas of the province to deliver AstraZeneca vaccine. In the Fraser Health region they are for people age 30 and older who can check their eligibility by postal code here. Neighbourhoods include Abbotsford Rural, Abbotsford Central, Abbotsford East, Abbotsford West, Cloverdale, East Newton, West Newton, Fleetwood, Guildford, North Delta, North Surrey, Panorama, South Langley Township, South Mission, Whalley and Willoughby.

Three communities in the Interior Health region are offering vaccine for people 18 and up, who can register using the age-based system to be invited for a vaccine appointment the same day: Summerland, Rutland and Golden.

RELATED: No fines handed out on first day of COVID-19 road checks

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