In the last 28 days, British Columbia has reported half the number of new Covid-19 cases as Alberta. Yet during those four weeks, more people in BC have died from coronavirus than in AB.

Since March, new Covid-19 cases reported by British Columbia numbered slightly over half the new cases reported by Alberta. Yet, during the nine months, coronavirus deaths in BC number about 90% of those in AB.

I can think of two possible explanations. Either the coronavirus is more deadly in BC, or the province chooses to do far less coronavirus testing that the neighbouring province.

In the last 14 days, BC’s Covid-19 deaths per million population are higher in BC than in Alberta and almost double the rate in Ontario.

The international agency Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) reported on testing.

Crucially, quick suppression of infections requires testing more people to identify who is infected; tracking them to make sure they do not spread the disease further; and tracing with whom they have been in contact. 

Testing for COVID-19: A way to lift confinement restrictions

Who expected that a province saying it prioritizes public healthcare would be outperformed by a province that seeks to wreck it?

Categories: Health

11 replies »

  1. I wonder if at least part of the reason has to be related to the different median age of the population in the two provinces. The median age in AB is 37.5 years and BC’s is 42.2 years (Stats Can 2020 figures). I believe health care expenditures per capital in AB have been significantly higher (over time and disregarding Kenney) than in BC.

    Although AB has done a lot of testing (particularly early in the pandemic) and they’re continuing to do that, I suppose, as you suggest, that may have allowed them to treat their cases more successfully because they’ve identified them more rapidly.

    I haven’t spent much time looking at the differences between the characteristics of the infected cohorts in the two provinces – are the proportions of infections from each cohort relatively the same between provinces or are there significantly more patients in the older age groups in the affected BC population. Certainly, BC data indicates that the vast majority of deaths occur in people over 75.

    It’s an interesting problem. But not the kind of thing Dr Henry would likely be willing to address in one of her pressers!


  2. There are many unpleasant truths about Covid-19 in BC and the NDP desperately does not to deal with them.

    Horgan, the new premier photo-op, does not like to deal with unpleasant news and has become a ditherer, like his namesake Mayor Dithers in Vancouver


  3. I’m not the only one who questions the tactics of dealing with the Corona virus. (I call it the Mexican beer virus, but I hear there is a move to have the name changed to Bud-lite beer virus). The highest number of the infections by far are in Fraser Health. A good portion of the people in the lower mainland don’t have a clue what Health jurisdiction they live in and carry on as if all is well. They live, play and work in different jurisdictions and is easy for the virus to spread. We should have called a Provincial shutdown over a month ago. For example, only essential service between the lower mainland and Vancouver Island. Mandatory masks indoors should have been called for back before the 2nd wave even got going. Clamp down on the number of people in stores. My daughter went down to the local mall this last week and got the hell out cuzz very few people were following the 2 metre rule. Maybe John and Adrian should say it as the Premier of Manitoba did.


  4. It has been interesting that V.I. had a lower rate of COVID than the mainland. Living in Nanaimo, spent time in Richmond and White Rock this summer and all three areas seemed to be fine. of course having kept up with the stats, didn’t go much further, except to Yale town and people there weren’t wearing masks as frequently as the 3 other areas.

    Vancouver island does have a lot of retirees and they don’t want to die, so they are wearing masks and they’re adhering to the game rules. It maybe seniors/aging baby boomers are adhering to the game rules because we can remember when disease killed. Any one who is 70 or older can remember polio before the vaccine. We can remember when AIDS hit North American. We didn’t have shots for child hood diseases.

    Why Alberta has a lower death rate, I’d suggest they have a younger population. I don’t know what hospitals are like now in Alberta, but 6 years ago they were better than B.C.’s at least in Calgary. It maybe that their doctors are seeing patients while those in B.C. aren’t .


    • Have you noticed the over abundance of out of province License plates lately (Alberta more noticeable because of only one plate)? They’re BC citizens, but their pay cheques are earned in Alberta’s oil field and support activities, and, more than likely their motor vehicle insurance is not valid because they’re living here most of the time due to Covid-19, not there with different rates):

      “In 2016 there were a total of 12,645 InterProvincial Employees working in the oil and gas extraction and support activities in Alberta.

      The largest proportion of interprovincial employees in Alberta in 2016 were from British Columbia (37 per cent)”


  5. Why, amidst all of the data, do we still have people commuting to cubicles? It’s unessesary, it’s clogging the roads for actual essential workers and it’s irresponsible.

    Employers who force their employees into their defunct offices should be ashamed. Employees who capitulate and drive to sit in a cubicle just so they can phone their colleagues in cubicles in the same building should also be ashamed.

    Work from home unless you are deemed essential.


  6. the crooked corrupt bc govt of the day would like to bury all news concerning c19 so they can keep the lng-trans mtn-and the crooked corrupt site c dam projects up and running without a hitch–if anyone thinks JH is running bc think again-its the crooked corrupt corporations that tell JH what to do and he jumps to the occasion–mark meiers-charlie lk bc


  7. 22mt, right above the comment box it is written; “Leave a reply but be on topic and civil.”
    This thread is about AB vs BC covid-19, not CORRUPTION.


    • Ummm… pretty hard to talk about BC or Albeta governments and not discuss corruption.

      This is exactly how politicians and civil “servants” have got away with crimes in Canada over the last 20 years; we no longer have media willing to speak truth to power and citizens are afraid to speak out lest they be labeled ‘uncivil’.

      Best way to get away with a crime is make it so big ($15 billion works) that no one believes that it was possible.

      Best way to counteract corruption and incompetence is to speak truth without fear. There will be consequences (many people lost their careers speaking out against Site C) but real change does not happen without sacrifice.


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