Graph shows rise in community and case cluster infections in October and November, and lag in data reporting as daily testing has risen to 10,000 or more. (B.C. Centre for Disease Control.)

Graph shows rise in community and case cluster infections in October and November, and lag in data reporting as daily testing has risen to 10,000 or more. (B.C. Centre for Disease Control.)

B.C. COVID-19 spreading fastest among younger people

20-29 age group showing steepest rise in infections

Younger people are driving the new surge in community infection of COVID-19, new data from the B.C. Centre for Disease Control show.

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry released the province’s latest infection modelling information Nov. 12, showing the highest rate of infection in October and November is among people from 20 to 29 years old, followed by the 30-to-39 age group. Those groups have driven the latest spike in infections, which continued at more than 500 daily cases Nov. 11 and 12.

Younger people are passing on the coronavirus through social activities and exposures in gyms and workplaces, and “what we’re seeing now is spillover into older age groups” as clusters spread, Henry said.

Visitors to private homes, family gatherings including funerals, and the gatherings in conjunction with old-timers’ hockey, youth soccer and football, as well as gym visits have added to the spread, which continues to be concentrated with more than 70 per cent of cases in the Fraser Health region this week, according to the latest modelling and contact tracing results.

“The sport itself is fine, but it’s the gathering together afterwards,” Henry said.

Henry described two scenarios based on real incidents, one being a single infected person who attended a wedding. That exposed 50 people, the maximum for gatherings, and 15 wedding guests later tested positive for COVID-19. That led to another 10 households with a positive test, 37 people required to self-isolate for two weeks and a family business that had five employees infected. One of the wedding guests worked at a long-term care home, and that led to 81 residents required to self-isolate in their rooms under outbreak protocol in the health care system.

Another case at a fitness class was traced to 180 positive cases at two group fitness studios.

Henry said with testing capacity increased to 10,000 or more tests a day, B.C.’s contact tracing to find exposed people has been “stretched to the max and we are falling a little bit behind.” Testing will be have to be managed as more people show up with similar symptoms caused by seasonal influenza.

“What we’re focusing on is seeing that people who need a test get a test,” Henry said.


@tomfletcherbc
tfletcher@blackpress.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

BC legislatureCoronavirus

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

The Canoe Forest Products plywood plant in Salmon Arm is holding its own. (File photo)
Canoe Forest Products in Salmon Arm holding its own during pandemic

General manager says pandemic has not forced layoffs, still 180 people working

COVID-19. (Image courtesy CDC)
47 new COVID-19 cases in Interior Health region

1,538 total cases, 399 are active, ten in hospital

A line of cars was left waiting for a train at the Marine Park Drive railway crossing as a train halted by a mechanical issue blocked both crossings in the area for close to an hour. (Photo Submitted)
Mechanical issues stall traffic at Salmon Arm rail crossings

Train was stopped on tracks blocking crossings at Narcisse Street and Marine Park Drive

Due to restrictions around COVID-19, access to the Larch Hills chalet will be limited for the 2020/21 cross-country ski season. (File photo)
Early snow means early cross-country skiing at Shuswap’s Larch Hills

COVID-19 requirements restrict use of chalet, postpones of events

The CP Holiday Train stops in Salmon Arm on Dec. 14, 2019. (File photo)
CP Holiday Train at Home to give $7,000 to Salmon Arm food bank

Council members express appreciation for support of the Shuswap from CP Rail

A woman wears a protective face covering to help prevent the spread of COVID-19 as she walks along the seawall in North Vancouver Wednesday, November 25, 2020.THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
911 new COVID-19 cases, 11 deaths as B.C. sees deadliest week since pandemic began

Hospitalizations reach more than 300 across the province

Black Press Media and BraveFace have come together to support children facing life-threatening conditions. Net proceeds from these washable, reusable, three-layer masks go to Make-A-Wish Foundation BC & Yukon.
Put on a BraveFace: Help make children’s wishes come true

Black Press Media, BraveFace host mask fundraiser for Make-A-Wish Foundation

Summerland residents have been receiving a telephone scam with the number showing as the telephone number of the local RCMP detachment. (Black Press Media files)
Summerland RCMP telephone number spoofed in scam calls

Number used in scam attempts from tax agency

(Village of Lumby photo)
Mysterious, loud ‘boom’ shakes North Okanagan residents

Village staff, Earthquakes Canada aren’t sure what caused the explosion-like sound

Clarence Fulton students collect cash and non-perishable food donations for families in need in their community Friday, Nov. 27. (Jennifer Smith  - Morning Star)
North Okanagan students collect food for families in need

Annual event to support nine school families this year

Take a break from the slopes to discover the rich culture and diversity of Vernon. Michelle Beaudry photo, courtesy Tourism Vernon.
Tourism Vernon could see 40% cut to budget due to COVID-19

New approach to help residents and visitors activate their adventures

Danika Rennie and Myles Lowe sport some realistic fake facial hair for Parkview Elementary’s moustache day on Nov. 27. (Contributed)
Snapshot: Moustache Day at Parkview

Parkview Elementary students showed up with their best false facial hair on Nov. 27

Follow public health recommendations, says Interior Health as COVID-19 cases continue to climb in Revelstoke. (Image courtesy CDC)
Revelstoke positive COVID cases grows to 29

Interior Health announced a cluster in the community on Nov. 26

Screenshot of Pastor James Butler giving a sermon at Free Grace Baptist Church in Chilliwack on Nov. 22, 2020. The church has decided to continue in-person services despite a public health order banning worship services that was issued on Nov. 19, 2020. (YouTube)
2 Lower Mainland churches continue in-person services despite public health orders

Pastors say faith groups are unfairly targeted and that charter rights protect their decisions

Most Read