The Georgia Straight

Henry admits to limited data on COVID spread in schools

- By Charlie Smith

For many months, Dr. Bonnie Henry has been claiming that B.C. schools and daycares are safe. But in a May 10 briefing to reporters, the provincial health officer conceded that informatio­n isn’t always available regarding COVID-19 transmissi­ons in these settings.

“In terms of the data we have, unfortunat­ely, our surveillan­ce data is limited in both those areas,” Henry said. “So we will present and continue to present what we do have.”

Henry also acknowledg­ed that there’s no informatio­n available on exactly who transmitte­d the virus to whom in schools and daycare facilities. But, she added, there have been “deep dives” into some of these situations in schools in the Vancouver Coastal and Fraser health regions.

In addition, Henry noted that there have been some “small outbreaks in transmissi­ons in childcare centres”. And she urged workers in these centres to get vaccinated.

“Childcare workers and school staff have been prioritize­d for immunizati­on,” Henry emphasized. “And immunizati­on has been very high in school staff across the province. Less so in people who work in childcare.”

Her comments came after the World Health Organizati­on and U.S. Centers for Disease Control accepting that COVID-19 is spread through airborne transmissi­on. Until April 22, Vancouver Coastal Health maintained on its website that “there is no reported evidence of airborne transmissi­on”.

The Straight first raised the possibilit­y of airborne transmissi­on in July 2020 after an article on this topic appeared in the journal Nature.

 ??  ?? Dr. Bonnie Henry wants daycare workers to get vaccinated after some “small outbreaks”.
Dr. Bonnie Henry wants daycare workers to get vaccinated after some “small outbreaks”.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Canada