BC's COVID-19 testing positivity rate hits new high for 7-day average

Positive test rate hits high

The rate of positive COVID-19 tests across British Columbia continues to rise, hitting the highest seven-day average since the start of the pandemic.

COVID-19 case counts have risen sharply in recent weeks across B.C., largely stemming from rapid transmission in the Fraser Health region. The positive test rate data shows the number of new positive cases divided by the number of tests conducted that day.

Recently, the BC CDC stopped reporting single-day positivity rate figures, replacing it with a seven-day rolling average. On Wednesday, that average hit a high of 4.9 per cent, higher than the old high of 4.5 per cent saw in early April.

While B.C. has seen higher single-day percentages in the past, hitting 7.81 per cent on April 6, the new data shows the high positive test rates have been more consistent over the past week.

The record-high numbers come largely from the Fraser Health region, where the seven-day rolling average positive test rate hit a high of 7.5 per cent Wednesday. In the Interior, that seven-day average percentage was 1.9, down from a high of four in mid April.

The BC CDC notes the positivity rate is impacted by the province's testing strategy. The province's strategy has remained the same since April 21, and continues to target anyone displaying any symptoms.

Ontario saw a positive test rate of 3.3 per cent Wednesday, while Washington State has had a rolling seven-day average per cent positive rate of 5.3 per cent in recent days.

B.C. has been conducting anywhere from 4,800 to more than 12,000 new COVID-19 tests every day in recent weeks. In the past week, 2,026 new cases have been identified in B.C, 1,403 of which came from the Fraser Health region. Sixty-nine of the new cases in the past week came from the Interior.

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