At the current rate of new infections, one in 53 Lower Mainland residents will catch the virus over the weeks to come. (Chart: Tyler Olsen)

At the current rate of new infections, one in 53 Lower Mainland residents will catch the virus over the weeks to come. (Chart: Tyler Olsen)

GRAPHIC: One in 25 Lower Mainland residents may contract COVID-19 by February if virus continues spread

Moderate increase cases would leave one in 20 Lower Mainland residents with virus by February

By mid-February, one in 53 Lower Mainland residents will be diagnosed with COVID-19 over the next 12 weeks if the current number of new case numbers hold. And if case counts continue to rise at even a fraction of their current rates, those odds will shorten dramatically, an analysis by The News shows.

(The positivity rate, which are the odds of someone who is being tested is unrelated to this analysis. These are odds are for any person residing in the Lower Mainland having a confirmed case of COVID-19.)

By mid-February, at a 10 per cent rate of increase, one in 21 Lower Mainland residents, and one in 32 British Columbians will have been diagnosed with COVID-19 since the pandemic began. If the past six months are any indication, more are likely to have acquired the virus but not know they have done so. One in 13 residents in the Fraser South region (Delta, Surrey, White Rock and Langley) will have had a confirmed case of COVID-19 if case numbers increase by 10 per cent each week.

Between Nov. 13 and 19, there were 4,500 confirmed cases of the virus in the Fraser Health and Vancouver Coastal Health regions. At that rate of new infections, 45,000 people will be diagnosed with COVID-19 by mid-February. Cases are also rising elsewhere, with every part of B.C. seeing significant increases in the number of confirmed cases.

If new case counts keep climbing – even modestly – it will become much more likely that one acquires COVID-19. The average person’s odds of being diagnosed with COVID-19 positive over the next 12 weeks will double if case numbers climb by even just 10 per cent per week. That 10 per cent number would actually require the rate of the virus’s spread has slowed. Since the start of October, new case numbers have grown at an average rate exceeding 30 per cent.)

Click the + button in the top-left of the image below to enlarge

The figures underscore the danger of an unchecked virus’s tendency towards exponential growth and the need to reverse recent trends. Similarly to the dangers posed by increasing numbers, if the number of new case counts decreases by 10 per cent each week, the number of people who are diagnosed with COVID-19 by February will be cut in half.

But if new case counts don’t increase and just remain level, the odds are good that most people know someone who will acquire the virus over the coming weeks.

At current case rates, by Feb. 12, one in 24 residents of the Fraser South region (Delta, Surrey, White Rock and Langley) will have confirmed COVID-19 diagnoses – including those who have already been infected. The figures don’t account for any missed cases that don’t result in a positive diagnosis.

Elsewhere in the Lower Mainland, odds of infection by Feb. 12 would range from one in 46 in Fraser East to one in 80 in Richmond.

In the Okanagan, one in 157 people would have been diagnosed; in Northern B.C. one in 217 people would have had confirmed cases, and on Vancouver Island, there would be about one case for every 600 people.

Across B.C., about one in 80 people will test positive for the virus over the next 12 weeks if case counts stop rising.

Do you have something to add to this story, or something else we should report on? Email:
tolsen@abbynews.com


@ty_olsen
Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Read the full 2019-2020 annual report report online at www.seabirdisland.ca.
Seabird Island looks back in 2019-20 report

Highlights include COVID response, new development, upgrades

The Abbotsford Police Department is investigating a shooting on Adair Avenue on Saturday night. (Photo by Dale Klippenstein)
Drive-by shooting in Abbotsford targeted home with young children, police say

Investigators believe home was mistakenly targeted by assailants

Menno Place. (Google Street View image.)
Abbotsford care home looks to hire residents’ family members amid COVID-19-related staff shortage

Family would get paid as temporary workers, while having chance to see loved ones while wearing PPE

Morning mist clears over the Hope Slough at Camp River Road on Sunday, Nov. 29, 2020. (Jessica Peters/ Chilliwack Progress)
WEATHER: Sunny skies in the forecast for Chilliwack and Abbotsford

Rain and wind expected Sunday night through Monday morning, then clear skies

LEFT: Krista Macinnis, with a red handprint across her face that symbolizes the silencing of First Nations people, displays the homework assignment that her Grade 6 daughter received on Tuesday. (Submitted photo)
RIGHT: Abbotsford School District Kevin Godden says the district takes responsibility for the harm the assignment caused.
Abbotsford school district must make amends for harmful residential school assignment: superintendent

‘The first step is to unreservedly apologize for the harm … caused to our community’: Kevin Godden

(Dave Landine/Facebook)
VIDEO: Dashcam captures head-on crash between snowplow and truck on northern B.C. highway

Driver posted to social media that he walked away largely unscathed

Black Press Media and BraveFace have come together to support children facing life-threatening conditions. Net proceeds from these washable, reusable, three-layer masks go to Make-A-Wish Foundation BC & Yukon.
Put on a BraveFace: Help make children’s wishes come true

Black Press Media, BraveFace host mask fundraiser for Make-A-Wish Foundation

A B.C. Ambulance Service paramedic wearing a face mask to curb the spread of COVID-19 moves a stretcher outside an ambulance at Royal Columbia Hospital, in New Westminster, B.C., on Sunday, November 29, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Top doctor urges Canadians to limit gatherings as ‘deeply concerning’ outbreaks continue

Canada’s active cases currently stand at 63,835, compared to 53,907 a week prior

A Canadian Pacific freight train travels around Morant’s Curve near Lake Louise, Alta., on Monday, Dec. 1, 2014. A study looking at 646 wildlife deaths along the railway tracks in Banff and Yoho national parks in Alberta and British Columbia has found that train speed is one of the biggest factors. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Frank Gunn
Study finds train speed a top factor in wildlife deaths in Banff, Yoho national parks

Research concludes effective mitigation could address train speed and ability of wildlife to see trains

A airport worker is pictured at Vancouver International Airport in Richmond, B.C. Wednesday, March 18, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Canada extends COVID restrictions for non-U.S. travellers until Jan. 21 amid second wave

This ban is separate from the one restricting non-essential U.S. travel

Langley RCMP issued a $2,300 fine to the Riverside Calvary church in Langley in the 9600 block of 201 Street for holding an in-person service on Sunday, Nov. 29, 2020, despite a provincial COVID-19 related ban (Dan Ferguson/Black Press Media)
Updated: Langley church fined for holding in-person Sunday service

Calvary church was fined $2,300 for defying provincial order

(File photo)
Vancouver police warn of toxic drug supply after 7 people overdose at one party

Seven people between the ages of 25 to 42 were taken to hospital for further treatment.

A man walks by a COVID-19 test pod at the Vancouver airport in this undated handout photo. A study has launched to investigate the safest and most efficient way to rapidly test for COVID-19 in people taking off from the Vancouver airport. The airport authority says the study that got underway Friday at WestJet’s domestic check-in area is the first of its kind in Canada. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO, Vancouver Airport Authority *MANDATORY CREDIT*
COVID-19 rapid test study launches at Vancouver airport for departing passengers

Airport authority says that a positive rapid test result does not constitute a medical diagnosis for COVID-19

Elissa McLaren broke her left elbow in the Sept. 20, 2020 collision. (Submitted)
Surviving victims of fatal crash in Fraser Valley asking for help leading up to Christmas

‘This accident has taken a larger toll financially, mentally and physically than originally intended’

Most Read