VICTORIA, B.C. – The Northern Health region added 39 cases Friday, lowering the active case count to 239.

There are 11 people in hospital, eight of whom are in critical care.

There was one COVID-19 death reported Friday, raising the regional total to 270.

Out of 18,204 cases since last March, 17,689 have since recovered.

Another 1,141 vaccine doses were given since Thursday, raising the total dose count to 415,430. Of those, 185,713 are second doses and 27,741 are other doses.

British Columbia added 789 cases on Friday, raising the active case count to 4,313.

There are 191 people in hospital, 74 of whom are in critical care.

There were three COVID-19 deaths across B.C. Friday, raising the provincial total to 2,399.

Out of 225,785 cases since last March, 218,960 have since recovered.

Another 34,215 vaccine doses were given, raising the total dose count to 9,101,805. Of those, 4,096,876 are second doses and 688,503 are other doses.

As of Friday, there are 302 cases of the Omicron variant in the province, one of those in the Northern Health Region.

The most recent vaccine coverage for eligible residents five and older is 86.9 per cent for the first dose, and 82.5 per cent have received both doses of a Health Canada approved vaccine.

Northern Health residents may have trouble finding an open vaccine clinic over the holidays.

According to the health authority’s website, clinics in the north will be closed with a range of schedules.

Most clinics will shut down between December 19th and January 3rd.

Health Minister Adrian Dix says the province is working on ensuring anyone who wants a booster can get one, but he didn’t give details.

“There are currently 1,800 pharmacy appointments posted across Northern Health Authority, only 450 bookings made for the next two weeks,” said Dix. “We can, I believe, move to fill those up in this next period and advance our immunization effort as well.”

The schedule for the drop-in vaccine clinic in Fort St. John is as follows:

• December 17th (9 a.m. to 4 p.m.)
• December 18th (2 p.m. to 6 p.m.)
• December 21th (9 a.m. to 4 p.m.)
• January 4th, 6th, 7th, 10th, 11th, 13th, 14th, 17th, 18th, 20th, 24th, 25th, 27th, 28th, 31st (9 a.m. to 4 p.m.)
• January 5th, 12th, 19th, 26th (12 p.m. to 8 p.m.)

This is a drop-in clinic. No appointment is required. Registration is recommended before coming to the Health Unit. The clinic is open to all ages, including 5-11 year olds.