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Okanagan COVID case rates remain low, increase in Kootenays

Local cases remain low

The number of new COVID-19 cases across the Okanagan remains low, although cases in the Lower Mainland continue to drop quicker than in the Interior.

The latest community-level COVID-19 data released by the BC Centre for Disease Control shows new cases have continued to fall in the Rutland area, to a daily infection rate of just four cases per 100,000 people between June 15 and 21. With a population of about 35,000 people, this works out to just 10 new cases in the region over the week.

In May, Interior Health considered the region a “high-transmission area,” and the daily infection rate reached a high of more than 30 daily infections per 100,000 people.

The new data shows a recent increase in cases in the Okanagan Mission area, where vaccination rates are some of the highest in the region – at 76 per cent of all residents 12 and older. The daily infection rate in the area rose to seven daily cases per 100,000 people, which works out to about 12 new infections over the week.

The case rate stayed relatively steady in Downtown Kelowna, at four daily cases per 100,000 people, while the Vernon Centre/Coldstream saw a rate of seven daily cases per 100,000 people. New case rates in the South Okanagan remained low.

As new cases have plummeted in the Lower Mainland in recent weeks, cases in the Interior are dropping at a slower rate. Interior cases now make up a much larger proportion of the province's daily cases than just a month ago, making up 28 per cent of all of B.C.'s 637 new cases between June 15 and 21.

Close to a third of last week's new Interior cases came from the East Kootenays, where the case rates have increased significantly.

The Windermere region had by far the worst case rate last week of anywhere in B.C., at 30 daily infections per 100,000 people. With a population of about 10,000 people, this works out to about 21 infections over the week. The Windermere region has one of the better single-dose vaccination rates in the region, at 78 per cent of those 12 and older, following targeted vaccination efforts last month.

The Fernie and Cranbrook regions also saw an increase in cases, with about 15 and 14 new cases over the week respectively.

Vaccination rates across the Thompson-Okanagan appear to have levelled off in recent weeks, with most communities posting one or two per cent increases in 12 and older single-dose vaccination rates compared to the week prior.

While the provincial average vaccination rate is close to 76 per cent for those 12 and older, just the Okanagan Mission, Southern Okanagan, Kamloops Centre South, Revelstoke, Golden and Windermere regions in the Interior have exceeded the provincial average.

The Enderby area still has the lowest single-dose vaccination rate in the province, at 56 per cent of all residents 12 and older.

Daily infections per 100,000 people (June 15-21)

  • Downtown Kelowna: 4 (-1)
  • Okanagan Mission: 7 (+6)
  • Rutland: 4 (-4)
  • Glenmore: 3 (-4)
  • Central Okanagan Rural: 0 (-16)
  • West Kelowna: 4 (+1)
  • Lake Country: 0 (-6)
  • Summerland: 0 (-1)
  • Penticton: 1 (no change)
  • Keremeos: 0 (no change)
  • Southern Okanagan: 1 (no change)
  • Princeton: 0 (no change)
  • North Okanagan/Lumby: 3 (no change)
  • Vernon Centre/Coldstream: 7 (-2)
  • Armstrong/Spallumcheen: 0 (no change)
  • Enderby: 0 (no change)
  • Salmon Arm: 1 (+1)
  • Lower Thompson: 1 (-1)
  • Kamloops Centre North: 1 (no change)
  • Kamloops Centre South: 1 (no change)
  • Merritt: 0 (-10)

12+ vaccination rates

  • Downtown Kelowna: 71% (+1)
  • Okanagan Mission: 76% (+2)
  • Rutland: 64% (+2)
  • Glenmore: 73% (+1)
  • Central Okanagan Rural: 66% (+1)
  • West Kelowna: 69% (+1)
  • Lake Country: 66% (+2)
  • Summerland: 75% (+1)
  • Penticton: 75% (+2)
  • Keremeos: 68% (+3)
  • Southern Okanagan: 76% (4)
  • Princeton: 69% (+1)
  • North Okanagan/Lumby: 63% (+1)
  • Vernon Centre/Coldstream: 70% (+2)
  • Armstrong/Spallumcheen: 62% (+1)
  • Enderby: 56% (+1)
  • Salmon Arm: 66% (+2)
  • Lower Thompson: 68% (+2)
  • Kamloops Centre North: 70% (+1)
  • Kamloops Centre South: 78% (+2)
  • Merritt: 67% (+1)

Test positivity, public tests (June 15-21)

  • Downtown Kelowna: 5% (no change)
  • Okanagan Mission: 9% (+6)
  • Rutland: 7% (-2)
  • Glenmore: 5% (-3)
  • Central Okanagan Rural: 3% (-14)
  • West Kelowna: 6% (+2)
  • Lake Country: 0% (-5)
  • Summerland: 0% (-1)
  • Penticton: 1% (no change)
  • Keremeos: 0% (no change)
  • Southern Okanagan: 1% (-1)
  • Princeton: 0% (no change)
  • North Okanagan/Lumby: 3% (+1)
  • Vernon Centre/Coldstream: 8% (+1)
  • Armstrong/Spallumcheen: 0% (no change)
  • Enderby: 0% (no change)
  • Salmon Arm: 2% (+2)
  • Lower Thompson: 4% (-1)
  • Kamloops Centre North: 2% (+1)
  • Kamloops Centre South: 2% (no change)
  • Merritt: 0% (-12)


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