The western edge of Vancouver Island is lagging behind the rest of the Island Health region when it comes to COVID-19 numbers.
Not only are the two leading per capita areas in terms of new infections on the west coast, the area is also lagging behind in the number of people fully vaccinated.
The Western Communities recorded 45 new infections last week, up from 19 the previous week, making it one of just two Island Health sub-regions to report an incidence rate of more than 5 cases per 100,000 population.
Port Alberni and other communities on the central west coast were the other COVID-19 hotspots, according to data from the B.C. Centre for Disease Control (BCCDC).
The BCCDC has released weekly case numbers by local health service area from Aug. 8 to Aug. 14. During this week, Alberni-Clayoquot was one of the areas on Vancouver Island with the highest case counts as it recorded 18 new cases, up from just eight in the previous week.
The Saanich Peninsula health area reported 15 new cases total, while the core Greater Victoria health area reported 58.
Canada is now in the fourth wave of the COVID-19 pandemic and communities across the country are seeing a surge in cases that is largely being driven by the Delta variant.
The BCCDC also reports that west coast communities on Vancouver Island are lagging when it comes to vaccinations. As of Aug. 17, Cowichan Valley West has the lowest percentage of people fully vaccinated (two doses) at 64 percent. Vancouver Island West sits at 68 percent of people fully vaccinated, and Alberni-Clayoquot sits at 69 percent.
The highest rate of full vaccination is in the Saanich Peninsula (84 percent) and Greater Victoria (80 percent).
Island Health is encouraging people to get vaccinated to stop the surge of COVID-19 cases. Walk-ins are now welcome for anyone aged 12 and older for both dose one and two at any community COVID-19 clinic in Island Health.
To make an appointment, visit www.getvaccinated.gov.bc.ca or call 1-833-838-2323.
This week, Island Health’s “Vax Van” mobile clinic is in the Cowichan Valley. The Vax Van schedule can be found at www.islandhealth.ca.
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