Peel Region Paramedic Ryan Kingsborough, administers a dose of the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine during a pop up clinic at the Muslim Neighbour Nexus Mosque, in Mississauga, Ont., Thursday, April 29, 2021. High vaccination rates among seniors and more infectious variants of COVID-19 are shifting the weight of pandemic in Canada towards younger people. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Christopher Katsarov

Peel Region Paramedic Ryan Kingsborough, administers a dose of the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine during a pop up clinic at the Muslim Neighbour Nexus Mosque, in Mississauga, Ont., Thursday, April 29, 2021. High vaccination rates among seniors and more infectious variants of COVID-19 are shifting the weight of pandemic in Canada towards younger people. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Christopher Katsarov

Hospitalizations, ICU admissions growing for younger Canadians in third wave

Among people under 60, hospitalizations and ICU admissions went way up

High vaccination rates among seniors and more infectious variants of COVID-19 are shifting the weight of the pandemic in Canada to younger people.

An analysis of data published online by Health Canada suggests far fewer seniors ended up in hospital with COVID-19 in April than during the second wave peak in January.

But among people under 60, hospitalizations and ICU admissions went way up.

Chief Public Health Officer Dr. Theresa Tam has said from the beginning of the pandemic that COVID-19 is riskier for the elderly, but that it can and does strike down the young as well.

Now with variants of COVID-19 spreading more easily, more people are getting infected, and the still rare severe outcomes for the young are happening more often.

“As a result it reaches many more people, resulting in, even if they’re rare events becoming more frequent,” she said. “So I do think that is a key aspect of why we’re seeing more younger individuals getting into hospitals … even rare events can be more common.”

Several tragic cases have been reported in the last week, including the heartbreaking death of 13-year-old Emily Viegas in Brampton, Ont., and the suspected COVID-19 death of 17-year-old Sarah Strate in Magrath, Alta. April 26.

British Columbia recorded its first death of a patient in their 20s last week. The province also said last week a child under two with pre-existing health complications had died from the virus.

As of April 23, eight people under 19 had died of COVID-19 in Canada, half of them since February. More than 40 per cent of deaths of people in their 20s, 30s and 40s also occurred since February.

For people in their 40s, more than half of all ICU admissions have taken place since February.

That the third wave is outpacing anything Canada has seen before is clear.

The average daily case loads of COVID-19 in January peaked at around 8,100 cases, while in April it appears to have peaked at around 8700 cases.

Ontario, Alberta, B.C. and Nova Scotia all reported record one-day totals for COVID-19 cases in April, and Ontario, Alberta, and B.C. are also seeing record highs in hospitals and intensive care.

More than 1,400 people are in intensive care with COVID-19 in Canada right now, compared to the January peak of about 900 ICU patients.

And more of them are under the age of 70, said Tam.

“That’s what’s actually impacting the ICU capacity at the moment in a number of the provinces,” she said.

With more than eight in 10 people over 70 now vaccinated, severe outcomes are plummeting in that age group.

The number of people over 70 who died between March 26 and April 23 fell more than 77 per cent, while hospitalizations due to COVID-19 fell 44 per cent, and intensive care admissions fell 15 per cent.

Deaths among 50 to 70 year olds also fell substantially — about 38 per cent — but the number of new hospitalizations for 50 year olds was up by about 25 per cent, and hospitalization almost 40 per cent.

There were very small increases in deaths for people under 50, but for people in their 40s, hospitalizations grew 65 per cent and ICU admissions almost 60 per cent.

Hospitalizations of people in their 20s and 30s grew 40 per cent, while ICU admissions grew by about 57 per cent.

The COVID-Zero approach: Why Atlantic Canada excels at slowing the spread of COVID-19

Mia Rabson, The Canadian Press


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Coronavirus

Just Posted

Construction work in 2020 at Nelson’s Mountain Station reservoir. Photo: Bill Metcalfe
New report outlines how to protect Nelson’s water sources

Document looks at stream flows, forests, terrain stability, wildfires, flooding, and more

South Okanagan MP Richard Cannings wants to see dental coverage for all Canadians. (courtesy of Pixabay)
OPINION: South Okanagan MP fights for universal dental care

One in three Canadians have no dental coverage, with COVID making it even worse

COVID-19 cases are once again dropping across the West Kootenay. Illustration: BC Centre for Disease Control
Ten new cases of COVID-19 in Nelson area

Numbers are steadily dropping across the West Kootenay

The first Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine dose in Canada is prepared at The Michener Institute in Toronto on Monday, Dec. 14, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Frank Gunn
One death, 39 new cases of COVID-19 in Interior Health

There are 484 active cases of the virus in the region currently

Portions of the Skattebo Reach Trail are being improved. Photo: Betsy Kline
Skattebo Reach Trail near Castlegar to become cycle friendly

Trail improvements geared towards cyclists being done in 2021

Prince Rupert was one of the first B.C. communities targeted for mass vaccination after a steep rise in infections. Grey area marks community-wide vaccine distribution. (B.C. Centre for Disease Control)
B.C. tracks big drop in COVID-19 infections after vaccination

Prince Rupert, Indigenous communities show improvement

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

The AstraZeneca-Oxford University vaccine. (AP/Eranga Jayawardena)
2nd person in B.C. diagnosed with rare blood clotting after AstraZeneca vaccine

The man, in his 40s, is currently receiving care at a hospital in the Fraser Health region

Brian Peach rescues ducklings from a storm drain in Smithers May 12. (Lauren L’Orsa video screen shot)
VIDEO: Smithers neighbours rescue ducklings from storm drain

Momma and babies made it safely back to the creek that runs behind Turner Way

Signage for ICBC, the Insurance Corporation of British Columbia, is shown in Victoria, B.C., on February 6, 2018. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
$150 refunds issued to eligible customers following ICBC’s switch to ‘enhanced care’

Savings amassed from the insurance policy change will lead to one-time rebates for close to 4 million customers

The Libby Dam on the Kootenai River in Montana. The dam created the Koocanusa Reservoir, which straddles the B.C./Montana border. (photo courtesy Wikipedia)
Outflow at Libby Dam to be increased

Volume increase to aid migration and spawning conditions for endangered white sturgeon in the Kootenai River

Police investigate a fatal 2011 shooting in a strip mall across from Central City Shopping Centre, which was deemed a gang hit. The Mayor’s Gang Task Force zeroed in on ways to reduce gang involvement and activity. (File photo)
COVID-19 could be a cause in public nature of B.C. gang violence: expert

Martin Bouchard says the pandemic has changed people’s routines and they aren’t getting out of their homes often, which could play a role in the brazen nature of shootings

Tinder, an online dating application that allows users to anonymously swipe to like or dislike other’s profiles. (Black Press Media files)
B.C. man granted paternity test to see if Tinder match-up led to a ‘beautiful baby’

The plaintiff is seeking contact with the married woman’s infant who he believes is his child

Nurse Tami Arnold prepares to administer a COVID-19 vaccine. (Kareem Elgazzar/AP)
B.C. adults 30+ now eligible to get vaccinated against COVID-19

Health officials made the announcement Wednesday afternoon

Most Read