The COVID-19 case-map for local health areas over July 25 to 31. (BC CDC)

The COVID-19 case-map for local health areas over July 25 to 31. (BC CDC)

South Okanagan sees COVID-19 cases return as Central Okanagan spikes

The Central Okanagan saw 450 new cases over July 25 to 31

Covid-19 is rising again in the South Okanagan.

The latest update from the B.C. Centre for Disease Control shows that there were eight new cases in the Penticton local health area from July 25 to 31.

The Southern Okanagan local health area, stretching from Okanagan Falls to Osoyoos, saw five new cases.

It’s a striking shift as Penticton had gone from June 27 to July 17 without any cases, followed by just two over July 18 to July 24.

Cases in nearby Central Okanagan local health area’s have exploded and now account for the largest number of new cases in the entire province.

Over July 25 to 31, there were 450 new cases, a dramatic increase from the 153 recorded over July 18 to 24, and the 53 over July 11 to 17. That spike of cases led to an outbreak being declared and a return of pandemic protocols and restrictions like a mask order.

Minister of Health Adrian Dix has called for people to get vaccinated as the Interior’s case counts are mostly attributed to the Delta variant.

READ MORE: Health minister urges vaccination as COVID-19 cases rise in B.C. Interior

In addition to appointments for vaccines, which can be booked, there are drop-in clinics that are available in the South Okanagan for those who haven’t been vaccinated yet, or who had their first shot over 49 days earlier.

To make an appointment, register online by visiting the provincial website at www.getvaccinated.gov.bc.ca/ or call 1‑833‑838‑2323.

The drop-in clinics will be set up at the Penticton and Summerland Farmers’ Markets from 9 a.m. until 1 p.m.

READ MORE: Vaccine drop-in clinics extended at Penticton, Summerland farmers’ markets

The Similkameen has so far managed to avoid a return of any new cases for multiple weeks in a row.

The Summerland local health area recorded one new case over July 25 to 31, down from six new cases the week before.

To report a typo, email: editor@pentictonwesternnews.com.


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