Dr. Bonnie Henry says ‘new game’ with Omicron variant could signal end of COVID-19 pandemic

B.C. Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry mentioned the record-breaking surge of COVID-19 cases within the province may ultimately lead to a level where the virus turns into endemic.

The province goes via its worst spike in infections but, pushed by way of the more infectious Omicron variation, with the FOUR,383 cases recorded on Thursday marking an all-time report number for daily instances.

In a 12 months-end interview with CBC News, Henry said Omicron’s unfold was once “impulsively rapid” for the province’s well being authorities, calling it a “new sport” of the pandemic.

She offered gathering restrictions in response to the province’s 5th wave, on Dec. 17, and announced on Wednesday that the majority OKAY-12 students may go back one week later than same old from winter break.

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“I agonized completely about making the decisions that we did on Dec. 17,” she said. “I then spent that entire weekend agonizing extra.… I needed to test my optimism bias.

“It was once a very difficult resolution, but I felt we wanted to overreact in preference to underreact at that point.”

Though the province’s daily circumstances are peaking, and make contact with tracing and checking out are at full capability (that means B.C.’s actual case counts are likely much upper), Henry says she believes the province will sooner or later see the end of the pandemic.

“the way the virus is converting with Omicron — that may be best us to that place quicker,” she mentioned. “the type of illness it’s causing, with such a lot folks being safe via vaccination, implies that we’re going to get to that position.”

WATCH | Dr. Bonnie Henry says her decisions have been according to available knowledge: 

Dr. Bonnie Henry says 'new game' with Omicron variant could signal end of COVID-19 pandemic

Dr. Bonnie Henry addresses criticism around pandemic leadership

9 hours ago

Duration 1:10

Dr. Henry says she knows no longer individuals are pleased with her decision-making across the pandemic, however she has been shocked by the quantity of private attacks she has gained. 1:10

Henry says the virus will ultimately develop into endemic as the season shifts to spring, extra children get vaccinated and the spread of infection slows, although she stated there are nonetheless many unknowns in advance.

“i feel we are getting there, however we are at all times going to have to learn some of the lessons from this,” she stated. 

“some of them are societal — across the inequities that this virus has exposed and the worth that we placed on differing types of employees, for instance.” 

By No Means felt political drive

Henry, who has been the face of the province’s COVID-19 reaction, with Most Advantageous John Horgan taking a again seat, says she never felt political interference over the course of the pandemic.

“i’ve tremendous appreciate for our elected officials,” she said. “they have a shockingly important function, and my position is to offer the most efficient recommendation conceivable and to try and to find that steadiness.”

Dr. Bonnie Henry says 'new game' with Omicron variant could signal end of COVID-19 pandemic

Henry is noticed with B.C. Most Excellent John Horgan and Health Minister Adrian Dix. She has been the face of the province’s COVID-19 response for the reason that pandemic started. (Mike McArthur/CBC)

Henry additionally discovered that she has regular meetings with the Opposition party, the B.C. Liberals, to boot as with well being officers throughout the country and province.

She mentioned she used to be grateful for the recommendation and complaint that she has gained from her various meetings, and mentioned officials allow her take the lead whilst making necessary choices.

Resolution-making in accordance with to be had information

Henry said she stands through the decisions the province has taken over the course of the pandemic, in spite of steady criticism that B.C. has responded too slowly to the spread of COVID-19.

“i’ve a powerful feel that we’re making rational selections with the best knowledge that now we have,” she stated. “i don’t assume we’re doing any higher or worse than we now have from the very starting.”

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Henry said she was so much proud of her choices to delay 2nd doses and supply combine-and-match vaccine doses. She applauded the neighborhood for stepping as much as co-function with B.C.’s rollout.

She stated there have been many decisions that she might have quite altered had she known extra, but did not get into specifics.

“i’ve mentioned from the very starting that we watch for the recriminations, the category-motion court cases and the public inquiries ahead of we begin celebrating anything,” she mentioned with a laugh.

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