Canada

COVID-19: British Columbia reports 515 new cases, 2 deaths

B.C. recorded 515 new cases of COVID-19 on Tuesday.

The province also reported two people over the age of 80 have died from the disease, bringing the province’s COVID-19 death toll to 1,624.

Of the new cases,116 were in the Vancouver Coastal Health region, 300 were in the Fraser Health region, 20 were in Island Health, 65 were in Interior Health, and 12 were in Northern Health.

B.C. government introduces legislation to fill gaps in sick pay during pandemic

The number of COVID-19 patients in hospital rose by 11 to 426, the province said Tuesday. Of those, 141 are in intensive care, a decrease of nine.

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There are 6,020 active cases of COVID-19 in B.C., the province reported.

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Earlier in the day, the province introduced legislation that will bring in three days of paid sick leave related to COVID-19.

Read more: COVID-19: B.C. introduces sick pay legislation to fill gaps in federal program

Employers will be required to pay workers their full wages and the B.C. government will reimburse employers without an existing sick leave program up to $200 per day for each worker.

About half of B.C. employees do not currently have access to paid sick leave, according to government estimates.

B.C. health officials on Monday opened COVID-19 vaccinations to people 18 years of age and older who live in high-risk areas.

Read more: COVID-19: B.C. opens vaccination bookings to those 18+ living in hot spots

Adults who were born in 2003 or earlier and live in a neighbourhood or town experiencing high rates of COVID-19 transmission can book their vaccination appointment. Those who are unsure if they are eligible can enter their postal code at the B.C. government website.

Henry also noted that all British Columbians aged 40 and older are now able to book a COVID-19 vaccine.

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Henry said Monday that more than two million people have received their first dose of COVID-19 vaccine.

She also reported 1,759 new COVID-19 cases over a 72-hour period, along with 20 deaths.

— With files from Richard Zussman and The Canadian Press

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