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BC Healthcare workers will need to be vaccinated to keep their job

Provincial Health Officer Doctor Bonnie Henry has announced that healthcare workers who work in acute and community care will need to be fully vaccinated from COVID-19 by October 26.

“This includes all workers, students, physicians, residents, contractors, and volunteers who work in a healthcare facility including contracted facilities which are accessible to patients and where they receive services,” said Henry.

She added this will be a condition of employment for all healthcare facilities in the province, but those who cannot get a vaccine due to health conditions will be taken into consideration and will have a process through her office to review requests for exemptions.

On another topic, Henry stated that a third dose of a COVID-19 vaccine is now being recommended for people who are immunocompromised in the province.

Henry said only those who receive an invite to get a booster shot are allowed to get one, but include:

  • those who have immunodeficiencies
  • those who have had an organ transplant
  • those who have had a bone marrow or stem cell transplant
  • those who are being treated for Hematologic cancers and Lymphoma
  • on a medication that suppresses the immune system

Minister of Health Adrain Dix gave an update on the surgeries throughout BC, saying there have been postponements this year.

“We are adding operating room time. Those who have had their surgeries postponed should know we are adding operating room time to address that backlog and reduce our overall waitlist.”

Dix added that they are adding staff as well, but knows that having surgeries cancelled can be extremely stressful.

Both Henry and Dix responded to people threatening small businesses across the province for following the law and enforcing the vaccine card that was implemented today (Monday. September 13).

“This is not an option for these businesses. These are the businesses who have suffered the most through this pandemic, and the people who work there are deserving of respect,” said Henry.

“I don’t know what we say to people or how it is in any way acceptable to anyone as conduct to threaten people for following the law, it’s really despicable,” said Dix.

Over a three day period BC reports 1,984 new COVID-19 cases in the province, with 294 in Northern Health, and 542 in Interior Health:

Sept. 10-11: 823 new cases

* Sept. 11-12: 641 new cases

* Sept. 12-13: 520 new cases

This brings the active case count to 5,825, with 1,618 in the interior and 931 in the north.

Of the active cases, 278 individuals are in hospital and 139 are in intensive care.

The new/active cases include:

  • 609 new cases in Fraser Health
  • Total active cases: 1,711
  • 319 new cases in Vancouver Coastal Health
  • Total active cases: 945
  • 542 new cases in Interior Health
  • Total active cases: 1,618
  • 294 new cases in Northern Health
  • Total active cases: 931
  • 220 new cases in Island Health
  • Total active cases: 607
  • no new cases of people who reside outside of Canada
  • Total active cases: 13

In the past 72 hours, nine new deaths have been reported.

The new deaths include:

* Fraser Health: three

* Vancouver Coastal Health: one

* Interior Health: three

* Island Health: two

From Sept. 3-9, people not fully vaccinated accounted for 77.8% of cases and from Aug. 27-Sept. 9 they accounted for 86.2% of hospitalizations.

Past week cases (Sept. 3-9) – Total 4,779

* Not vaccinated: 3,305 (69.2%)

* Partially vaccinated: 411 (8.6%)

* Fully vaccinated: 1,063 (22.2%)

Past two weeks cases hospitalized (Aug. 27-Sept. 9) – Total 348

* Not vaccinated: 282 (81.0%)

* Partially vaccinated: 18 (5.2%)

* Fully vaccinated: 48 (13.8%)

Past week, cases per 100,000 population after adjusting for age (Sept. 3-9)

* Not vaccinated: 306.3

* Partially vaccinated: 92.9

* Fully vaccinated: 27.4

Past two weeks, cases hospitalized per 100,000 population after adjusting for age (Aug. 27-Sept. 9)

* Not vaccinated: 38.4

* Partially vaccinated: 7.0

* Fully vaccinated: 1.1

That being said, 79.3% of BC adults and 78.4% of those 12 and up are fully vaccinated.

86.4% of adults in the province and 85.8% of those 12 and older received their first jab.

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