COVID-19 UPDATE JAN. 24: Letter from PHO Dr. Bonnie Henry

By College Relations | January 24, 2022

On Friday, Jan. 21, 2022, BC post-secondary institutions received this letter from Provincial Health Officer (PHO) Dr. Bonnie Henry.  

In the letter, Dr. Henry re-affirmed public health’s strong recommendation for the continuation of on-campus instruction at post-secondary institutions.  

Dr. Henry notes that Public Health continue to see lower rates of COVID-19 incidence in the post-secondary population, and this reflects the high vaccination rates and comprehensive safety measures in place. In contrast to the controlled nature of classrooms and offices, SARS-CoV-2 transmits most efficiently in homes and unstructured or informal social settings. 

The PHO continues to reiterate the importance of vaccination as the single most effective intervention for reducing the burden of illness related to COVID-19. Okanagan College continues to strongly encourage all members of the OC community who are able to be vaccinated and receive their boosters to do so at their earliest opportunity. You can learn more on Interior Health’s Immunization Clinics page

On January 20, 2022 the PHO released a new Workplace Safety Order requiring employers to have a COVID-19 Safety Plan in accordance with WorkSafeBC guidance. Section T of the Order confirms that the Order does not apply to post-secondary institutions because detailed COVID-19 protocols have already been developed to address COVID-19 related risks, in close collaboration with staff from the PHO. 

We expect revised Return to Campus guidelines with additional information about rapid testing in post-secondary will be published before the end of January. In the meantime, please continue to follow all posted on-campus signage and guidance on the College’s COVID-19 page, which also contains the College’s Communicable Disease Plan, FAQs and supports, what to do if you are ill, up-to-date mask guidance, daily health check information and more. 

Thank you to every member of the OC community for your continued adherence to public health guidance and on-campus expectations.  

Tags: COVID-19, COVID-19 employees, COVID-19 students



Sign up for weekly stories


Cam Egan hiking Mount Kaala with two friends
Meet Cam Egan, Biology Professor

March 8, 2022

Q: What is your name and role at Okanagan College?  A: Cameron Egan, College Professor in the Department of Biology  Q: What did you take at OC/OUC? When did you graduate? What campus did you attend?  A: I was enrolled in the Associate of Science program at the Vernon campus 2003-2005. This was during the transition years between OUC and OC.  Q: Why did you choose your program at OC?    A: Biology always fascinated me as a high school student. When starting my post-secondary educat...

Haley Chapman and Bailey
Meet Haley Chapman, Pharmacy Technician Student

February 28, 2022

Q: What is your name? A: Haley Chapman. Q: What program and year of study are you in at Okanagan College? A: I am in enrolled in the Pharmacy Technician Certificate Program and am about to enter my third month of classes. Q: Which campus do you primarily study at? A: The Kelowna Campus. Q: What drew you to that program?  A: I have been working as a Pharmacy Assistant for five years now and I wanted to further my knowledge and capabilities within the Pharmacy. I’ve fallen in lov...

Tara Laveay with her dog
Meet Tara Laveay, Therapist Assistant student

February 20, 2022

Q: What is your name/preferred name?   A: Tara Laveay   Q: What are your pronouns?    A: She/Her  Q: What program and year of study are you in at Okanagan College?    A: First year, Therapist Assistant Diploma   Q: Which campus do you primarily study at?    A: Kelowna   Q: What drew you to that program?     A:  Everything! This is a program that is built for me. The fact that I get to participate in helping a person to make their daily living better through things such as movement ...

Student Mikala Vujcich with her dogs
Meet Mikala Vujcich, Therapist Assistant student

February 16, 2022

Q: What is your name/preferred name?   A: Mikala   Q: What are your pronouns?   A: she/her   Q: What program and year of study are you in at Okanagan College?  A: I am in my last semester of the Therapist Assistant Diploma  Q: Which campus do you primarily study at?   A: Kelowna   Q: What drew you to that program?   A: The TAD program is a defined diploma program, meaning it is designed and built to direct successful graduates right into the industry. That and the fact that it is a...