BC Liberals call for greater transparency in COVID-19 data reporting

KELOWNA (January 11, 2021) – Today, the BC Liberals sent a letter to the Minister of Health calling for increased transparency concerning the public reporting of COVID-19 data in B.C, joining community leaders, parents, local governments who have been voicing their concerns on this important issue.

“Access to clear, consistent, and understandable data is essential in helping people better understand the risks of this virus and make more informed decisions as we enter the second year of this pandemic,” said Renee Merrifield, BC Liberal Health Critic and MLA for Kelowna-Mission. “Although there has been some progress in recent weeks, the B.C. government remains far behind other jurisdictions in providing frequent, granular data to the public, and it is having negative impacts on British Columbians.”

In a letter to the Minister of Health, BC Liberal MLAs Renee Merrifield and Jackie Tegart called on the Minister to increase public reporting of COVID-19 data, including daily updates on vaccinations delivered and administered in each health authority and detailed daily case breakdowns for schools, long-term care homes and assisted living facilities.

“Right now, parents are asking for information to make decisions for the safety of their children in schools, families want to know more so they can provide the best possible care for at-risk family members — people want to be able to make evidence-based decisions,” said Tegart, BC Liberal Education Critic and MLA for Fraser-Nicola. “Data is a vital tool that can help promote greater compliance with public health orders and help reassure British Columbians they have the information necessary to make the best decisions for their families.”

Alarmingly, it has been 24 days since B.C. last published a COVID-19 situation report— a report that was previously published weekly to provide a more in-depth look at COVID-19 epidemiology, underscoring data and key trends.

Attachment: Data disclosure request letter to Minister Dix, January 11, 2021

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