Vancouver Coastal Health (VCH) has launched a new campaign to communicate pandemic safety to young people across the province.
The initiative includes a series of COVID-safe summer guides posted on social media and online, as well as a poster campaign and a TikTok video series on pandemic do’s and don’ts.
The guides include tips for getting together with friends, visiting restaurants, playing recreational sports, going on road trips or to the beach – and COVID-safe sex.
"We want people to get out and enjoy summer with their friends, but we can’t forget that COVID-19 is still in our communities,” said VCH’s Chief Medical Health Officer Dr. Patricia Daly.
The campaign was launched in response to the rise in COVID-19 cases in B.C., particularly in people under the age of 40.
“The 60-plus age group now represents 16 per cent of our cases, while those aged 20 to 39 make up 56 per cent of our cases,” said Daly.
That’s a switch from the first months of the pandemic, when 43 per cent of B.C.’s cases were in the 60-plus age group, she said.
VCH data shows that the median age for those who test positive for COVID-19 has now dropped, from 57 years old in Phase 1 of B.C.’s Restart Plan to 34 years old in Phase 3.
Daly said the reasons for the shift in demographic are varied, but include the reopening of businesses that tend to employ younger adults, such as restaurants and bars.
But another reason for the shift is parties.
Is it okay to have sex during the COVID-19 pandemic? How can you lower your risk of getting sick or spreading the virus to others? Based on info from the BCCDC (@phsa.bc), we've pulled together a guide to COVID-19 and sex to help answer some of these very common questions. Missed the story? It's also saved to our Highlights above. Have a safe and healthy rest of your weekend, everyone. ☀️
“We’re seeing transmission take place in nightclubs in particular, but also at bars and restaurants, while boating and other indoor social settings,” said Daly.
“It’s the way people act and interact in these settings that’s problematic: sharing food and drinks, speaking loudly and in close proximity if there’s background noise, and not social distancing among strangers, especially if they’ve been drinking alcohol.”
As of Aug. 18, there has been a total of 1,526 cases of COVID-19 in the VCH region – which includes Richmond – infecting newborns to people aged 104.
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