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B.C. shortening gap between 1st and 2nd COVID vaccine doses to 28 days – Vernon Morning Star

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The province is now shortening the wait time between first and second doses to 28 days as cases surge in some parts of B.C.

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry said that the move is meant to get people in communities with outbreaks and higher transmission rates vaccinated sooner, with a focus on the hard-hit Central Okanagan. Henry said that starting tonight, approximately 170,000 people will get a notice that they are now eligible for their second dose. That process may take a few days, she added.

“We are experiencing some community outbreaks, particularly in the central Okanagan and increasing rates cases of the virus, particularly in pockets where we have unvaccinated people, or where we’re seeing people with only one dose of vaccines,” Henry said.

The vast majority of cases, she noted, continue to spread between young people at social gatherings when those individuals are not vaccinated.

However, she said that individuals who live and work in communities and settings with little COVID-19 transmission will still get a stronger level of protection if they wait the seven to eight weeks that B.C. previously required between doses.

“Right now we need to balance the risk of the epidemiology that we’re seeing and the need to get people as highly protected as possible, knowing that we have a lot of transmission from the highly transmissible strains here in the province, both Gamma and Delta,” Henry added. Delta currently makes up 95 per cent of new cases in the province.

READ MORE: Modelling group warns of ‘rapid growth’ in COVID cases, recommends masking for all indoors

Henry said that despite reports of breakthrough cases due to the Delta variant, the “vast majority of cases” are still in either partially or completely unvaccinated people.

She said that the risk with the Delta variant, which is more infectious than previous ones, is that once it gets into higher risk settings like long-term care facilities it can still spread.

As far as booster doses go, Henry said that it’s not yet clear when they’ll be needed and who will need one.

“Right now, there’s no indication that particularly young healthy people who get get their vaccine at 28 days need a booster shot,” she said. “But it looks like there might be a case for providing a third dose to some people whose immune systems didn’t respond to those one and two,” including people with organ transplants or undergoing some forms of cancer treatment.

READ MORE: Canada focused on 2nd doses, not COVID booster shots as 4th wave looms, Tam says


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Rodents on the rise: How to avoid an infestation this fall

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Rodents have become a larger problem for Canadian homeowners since the beginning of the Covid-19 pandemic. The pests that lived near bars and restaurants moved into residential neighbourhoods during lockdowns, spreading out their colonies and causing trouble.

With colder weather just around the corner, these rodents are likely to break into people’s homes. Invasions are especially common in the fall and winter when pests seek a warmer place to stay. Mice sneak in via the holes in the wall, and rats dig underground and into the basement.

While many homeowners deal with mice every year, it is important that they be kept out. Rodents are potential carriers of disease, and they will damage the home’s interior. The following tips, when used together, will help ensure that your home is pest-free this winter.

Block Entry Points

Rodents come from outside. While it may seem like they appear out of thin air, rodents find openings in the outer walls of the home and sneak their way inside. Wall vents, cracked window frames, and doors that have been left open are often to blame.

Examine your home’s exterior very carefully and use caulking or mesh to block the openings you find. Check between the layers of your siding, underneath your deck, and along the edges of your soffits for openings of 5mm or more. Put weatherstripping on the bottoms of your doors and seal cracks in the foundation with epoxy.

If you’re not sure you got them all, contact a mice exterminator for an inspection and pest-proofing service. Professionals offer complete pest-proofing in addition to pest control. They can find the entry points you missed and close them for you. If you know that there are rats in your neighbourhood, a professional can protect your foundation by digging a trench and attaching a mesh to its sides. This will prevent rats from digging into the basement.

Do Some Fall Cleaning

Spring isn’t the only time of year for cleaning. Mice, rats, ants, and other pests can smell the food you keep, and they will want their share. Deep clean the kitchen this fall and maintain it to keep pests out when it gets cold. Vacuum everywhere and clean the floors beneath your major appliances. Keep surfaces clean and store food in airtight containers to reduce odours. Never leave dirty dishes out overnight and use lidded garbage cans.

In addition to food, pests love clutter. Rodents like to hide in quiet, cluttered areas, like messy basements and storage rooms. This way, they can hide as they move from place to place. Get organized this fall and get rid of what you don’t need. Move objects off the floor and create space so there is nowhere for pests to hide.

Tidy up the Yard

Because rodents love food and clutter, it is important that you maintain the yard, as well. Trim back the vines, bushes, and plants that grow around the walls of the home to reduce the number of potential hiding spots. Move patio furniture and firewood away from the sides of the home, as well. Mow the lawn, rake the leaves, and bag all your organic materials for collection.

Pest control experts recommend getting rid of the bird feeder because it attracts rodents. While it is unfortunate, bird feeders are magnets of animal activity. Consider getting rid of it when the temperature cools or switch to one that hangs far away. Harvest your apples and home-grown produce on time, and secure your garbage cans with bungee cords or tight locks.

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Quebec man punches nurse in face for giving wife COVID-19 vaccine – Saanich News

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Police in Quebec say they are looking for a man who is alleged to have repeatedly punched a nurse in the face because he was angry she had vaccinated his wife against COVID-19.

Police say a man between the ages of 30 and 45 approached the nurse on Monday morning at a pharmacy in Sherbrooke, Que., about 150 kilometres east of Montreal.

They say he accused the nurse of vaccinating his wife against her consent and repeatedly punched the nurse before leaving the store.

Police say the nurse had to be treated in hospital for serious injuries to her face.

Quebec’s order of nurses tweeted today that the alleged assault was unacceptable and wished the nurse a full recovery.

Sherbrooke police are asking for the public’s help in finding the assailant, who they say has short dark hair, dark eyes, thick eyebrows and a tattoo resembling a cross on his hand.

—The Canadian Press

RELATED: ‘Go the hell home’: B.C. leaders condemn anti-vaccine passport protests

RELATED: ‘Stay away from children!’: Premier denounces protesters who entered Salmon Arm schools

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Fraser Health accounts for nearly half of 832 cases recorded in B.C., five deaths – News 1130

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VICTORIA (NEWS 1130) — B.C. is seeing yet another day of high COVID-19 cases, with another 832 people testing positive for the virus and five dying.

Nearly half of the new cases Thursday are in the Fraser Health region — which has seen 377 new infections.

That’s more than double the cases in any other health authority, including Interior Health, which saw a dramatic rise in cases over the summer.

There are 153 new cases in Interior Health, 114 in Vancouver Coastal Health, 117 in Northern Health, and 71 in Island Health.

Of the five people that have died in the last 24 hours, two deaths were recorded in Fraser Health, two in Interior Health and one person was in the Northern Health region.

Of the 5,697 active cases, 330 people are in hospital, of whom 148 are in the ICU.

Between Sept. 15 and 21, people not fully vaccinated accounted for 75.5 per cent of new infections.

From Sept. 8 and 21, they accounted for 82.6 per cent of hospitalizations.

Since the start of the pandemic, 181,769 COVID-19 cases have been recorded in the province, 173,786 people who tested positive have recovered and 1,915 people have died.

The province says those who are unvaccinated are 25.8 times as likely to be hospitalized after age is taken into consideration.

Of all eligible adults in the province, 87.8 per cent have had their first dose and 80.7 per cent are fully vaccinated.

There are a total of 22 active COVID-19 outbreaks at health care facilities.

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