The BC Centre of Disease Control (BCCDC) is advising British Columbians that the agency is combining surveillance reporting to include influenza, COVID-19 and other respiratory pathogens in one platform to better monitor trends throughout the respiratory season.
COVID-19 data will now be integrated with data for other respiratory pathogens and will be available through an interactive data reporting platform at: bccdc.ca/Respiratory Diseases.
“Integrated surveillance will better guide B.C.’s understanding of the burden of respiratory illness and its outcomes,” the BCCDC said.
Existing COVID-19 specific reports and dashboards will be accessed through the new Respiratory Diseases page including the:
· COVID-19 Weekly Report (provides recent data on COVID-19 cases, hospitalizations and deaths)
· COVID-19 Situation Report Situation Report (provides an in-depth look at COVID-19 epidemiology)
· COVID-19 Dashboard
· COVID-19 Epi App (interactive tool to visualize COVID-19 epidemiology in B.C. in comparison to other jurisdictions).
· Wastewater COVID-19 activity data
Interactive web pages will also provide:
· Laboratory testing data for respiratory pathogens such as influenza, RSV, enteroviruses/rhinoviruses and others
· Visits to primary care and other community health settings for respiratory illnesses
More data, including visits to acute care settings, outbreaks in health care facilities, samples submitted through the Sentinel Practitioner Surveillance Network, and testing for antibodies in blood samples, will be added to the surveillance platform over the coming weeks and months.
As the new integrated surveillance platform will more accurately reflect respiratory illness patterns across the province, it will replace the map of COVID-19 cases by Local Health Area. This shift also aligns with current guidance, which recommends testing primarily for people at the highest risk of severe illness, similar to testing practices for other respiratory diseases.
Going forward, people will be able to follow data from wastewater, MSP billing for visits to primary care and community health clinics, visits to emergency departments, and laboratory testing results for a greater number of illnesses. This will provide a more fulsome and accurate sense of illness and impact throughout the province.
Updates to other COVID-19 PDF reports and archived reports will continue to be available at: bccdc.ca/covid19data.
The BC Centre for Disease Control, a part of the Provincial Health Services Authority, provides public health leadership through surveillance, detection, treatment, prevention and consultation services. The centre provides diagnostic and treatment services for people with diseases of public health importance, and analytical and policy support to all levels of government and health authorities. The BCCDC also provides health promotion and prevention services to reduce the burden of chronic disease, preventable injury and environmental health risks.