Sunshine Coast COVID Physician Task Force
COMMUNITY UPDATE #53 - June 4, 2021
Dear Fellow Sunshine Coast Residents:
The past few weeks have brought good news with respect to the COVID-19 pandemic both locally and across the province. Sadly, we have also been reminded of how much work we need to do to build a truly caring, just and equitable society. Our hearts go out to those who have lost family members and to all those who have been affected in deep and long-lasting ways by the residential school system. We hope that the months and years ahead bring meaningful reconciliation and healing.
As you are all aware, we have finally started to move towards reopening with the BC Restart Plan. If we can keep things moving in the right direction, it looks like we will have minimal restrictions by the end of the summer. Please review the current Public Health recommendations to ensure you are doing everything you can.
Please remember that opening up is dependent on an ongoing decrease in new COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations, as well as adequate vaccination levels across the province. Please be safe and book in to get vaccinated if you haven’t already!
We are now cleared to travel within the Fraser Health and Vancouver Coastal Health regions for any reason. The current travel restrictions continue to prohibit non-essential travel to Interior and Northern Health, as well as to Vancouver Island, until June 15th. As of June 16th, we will be able to travel throughout the province without restrictions.
We are happy to report that our local COVID-19 infection numbers continue to drop, with only one positive test in the past week. Thank you for your ongoing vigilance!
With respect to local vaccinations, everyone 12 years of age and older is now eligible for their first dose, and many have already received their immunizations. We are also now booking people 70 and older for their second doses. If you have not yet registered for your first dose, or received your first dose before April 6th, please make sure to register at https://www.getvaccinated.gov.bc.ca/s/. You can also register by calling 1-833-838-2323, or by booking in person at any Service BC location.
With respect to our local vaccination program, we continue to make solid progress, with over 22,000 people on the Sunshine Coast having received their first dose. Thank you all for taking this very important step to protect yourself and our community!
Although our high community vaccination rate provides significant protection, identifying new infections remains essential, even for people who are vaccinated.
Please arrange for testing right away if you have one of the key COVID-19 symptom: fever, chills, new cough (or worsening of a chronic cough), difficulty breathing, or loss of sense of taste or smell. You should also get tested if you have two or more of the following symptoms for more than 24 hours: a sore throat, headache, extreme fatigue, diarrhea, loss of appetite, nausea or vomiting, and muscle aches.
The Respiratory Assessment Clinic remains open Monday through Saturday from 8:30 AM to 4:00 PM. If you meet criteria for testing, please contact the Respiratory Assessment Clinic at 604-740-1252, or at firstname.lastname@example.org. You will only be tested if you have symptoms or Public Health has advised you to get tested.
Please make sure to self-isolate at home if you are awaiting assessment or test results. You must continue to self-isolate until you have tested negative, and your symptoms have resolved. If you test negative, but continue to have ongoing or worsening symptoms, please contact the Respiratory Assessment Clinic.
If you have more severe symptoms and believe you may need to be admitted to hospital, please go to the Sechelt Hospital Emergency Department. If you need an ambulance, please call 911. Please remember that the Emergency Department remains open and safe for anyone with a medical emergency.
Keep well and please keep doing everything you can to keep our community safe!
The Sunshine Coast COVID Physician Task Force
Dr Jennifer Baxter
Dr Ted Krickan
Dr Herman Mentz
Dr Brian Nelson
Dr Daren Spithoff