Smithers Local Health Area (LHA) weekly COVID-19 infections were back into single digits for the week of March 21 – 27.
Northern Health reported eight new cases for the LHA which encompasses Houston to Witset during the latest reporting period.
Meanwhile, the health authority has opened up vaccine eligibility to all residents over the age of 18 in Houston and the Hazeltons
Surrounding LHAs also saw reduced numbers, although the average daily rate per 100,000 population (a measure the BC CDC uses for comparative purposes) remained well above 20 in the Prince Rupert, Nisga’a and Upper Skeena LHAs with 80, 7 and 17 respectively.
Two weeks ago, 85 per cent of the population of the City of Prince Rupert and Port Edward were vaccinated due to the high prevalence of the disease there.
The Terrace LHA saw a dramatic decrease in its numbers to 20.
Nechako and Burns Lake LHAs saw one and three cases respectively. Kitimat (13) and Haida Gwaii (5) were also down as the province in general was seeing numbers climb during the period.
Burns Lake remained low with four new cases while Nechako and the aggregate LHAs of Snow Country, Stikine and Telegraph Creek were COVID-free for the week.
Over the past few days B.C. as a whole has set new daily records with officials highly concerned about the spread of more transmissable variants.
On Tuesday, new public health orders went into effect shutting down restaurants, bars, religious services and fitness facilities.
Despite increasing numbers, the province is still going ahead with easing of rules regarding long-term care facilities. As of today, residents will be allowed up to two adult visitors plus a child at a time.
They will also be able to entertain those guests in their private rooms physical touch between residents and visitor will no longer be off limits.
More than 90 per cent of long-term care residents and 13 per cent of all British Columbians have been vaccinated so far.