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Province urging masks, but not mandating

The B.C. government is recommending mask-wearing as more people are coming down with COVID-19, influenza, or other respiratory viruses, but they won’t be mandatory.

Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry said the mandates were necessary when vaccination rates were low, but it’s a different situation now.

According to the provincial government, 51 percent of kids aged 5-11 have had their first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine.

Approximately 86 percent of British Columbians have received two doses and 57 percent have gotten their third shot.

Henry said there are 335 COVID-19-positive patients in hospitals across the province, but it doesn’t mean all hospitalizations were caused by COVID-19.

The province is encouraging people to get their boosters if they haven’t already and to get the flu shot as well.

with files from Josiah Spyker, My East Kootenay Now staff

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