Linda Huang / Staff reporter
Covid-19 continues to be an important topic. Every citizen is paying full attention to the number of daily cases. Since February 17, the number of confirmed cases has started to increase sharply. According to the provincial health officer’s warning on Tuesday, “the COVID-19 reproductive rate has risen above the troubling “one” mark in the Fraser Health region“.
The disease starts to spread exponentially in B.C. There has been more than one additional infection for each case of the virus in B.C.’s most populous region on average.
According to a recent article by David Carrigg in the Vancouver Province, “Most of the 91 school exposures reported on Monday and Tuesday were in the Fraser Health region. 40 percent of all school exposures are related to social gathering outside of school.”
In Fraser Health, the seven-day rolling average of the number of cases has started to creep up.
COVID-19 exposures keep increasing according to the statistics provided in a recent article by Carrigg, “There were 1,533 cases of COVID-19 reported in B.C. over the past four days and 26 deaths. There are 4,189 active cases, of which 231 are in hospital including 74 in intensive care.” Moreover, there has been one case of a Nigerian COVID-19 variant. And overall, 60 variants of concern detected in B.C. so far.
Dr. Bonnie Henry said in Carrigg’s article that “we know that when we start to have transmission from multiple people to multiple people, it grows what we call exponentially. That means if I pass it on to two people, each of them passes it on to two people. Very quickly we get to four, we get to 16, we get to 256 within two generations.”
Due to the fact that B.C. is the only Canadian province that does not provide daily COVID-19 updates during the weekend, many people are concerned about the current spread of the virus.
Since the social gathering is one of the main reasons to cause the transmission, the gathering around the school has become a focus of concern for many parents. Some of the high school parents believe that students should go back home as soon as they finish their classes so that to reduce the risk of unexpected transmission.
Juliet Yan, a Gleneagle parent, commented that “We agree to separate classes into smaller learning groups, thereby reducing unnecessary contact. We need effective ways to minimize the transmission among young people.”
Some students in Gleneagle also stated that the province should speed up COVID-19 vaccination, to ensure everyone’s health and safety in daily life. Most of the parents also believe that vaccination is a better way to control transmission.
According to Carrigg’s article in the Vancouver Province, “B.C. has less than 17,000 doses of COVID-19 vaccine on hand. Based on B.C. Centre for Disease Control data, the province has 16,745 doses of COVID-19 vaccine on hand as of Tuesday. The B.C. Ministry of Health has distributed 188,000 doses of vaccine and 171,755 have been injected.” However, many Canadian provinces and territories have experienced cuts in the promised vaccine supplies from Pfizer and Moderna in late January, but they have promised increased supplies in April.
“The fact that we’re seeing an increase in the reproductive number means that we’re not having those safe interactions as much as we need to be,” Henry said in Carrigg’s article. “We need to reduce the transmission events that are happening in our community, to ensure that the probability of the virus transmission is reduced.”