Pregnant women 16 and up can now get a COVID-19 vaccination shot in B.C., provincial health officials announced Tuesday.

The ever-widening category of people who now qualify for vaccines is being accompanied by a downward trend in the number of people who are newly-infected.

A total of 697 new cases were confirmed Tuesday across B.C., including 65 in the Interior Health region. That continued a downward curve consistent since early April, when new daily case counts in B.C. peaked at almost 1,300.

More than 1.9 million of B.C.’s 5.2 million residents have now received at least one shot of

COVID-19 vaccine.

The government has said all eligible recipients should have the chance to get a shot by mid-June.

“With the additional vaccine supply now available, we are accelerating our vaccine delivery to people throughout the province to get vaccines into arms as soon as possible,” provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry and Health Minister Adrian Dix said in a joint statement.

“Today, we are adding pregnant persons 16 and older to those who are eligible to book their vaccine. If you are pregnant, this is your time,” they said.

Pregnant women should register their details on the government's Get Vaccinated website, then call 1-833-383-2323 to make an appointment.

Since the onset of the pandemic in early 2020, 132,353 cases of the disease have been confirmed in B.C. Of the total, 123,383 people have recovered; there are 7,161 active cases, and 1,597 people have died of COVID-19.

People with COVID-19 flew to Kelowna from Calgary last week.

Positive cases of the virus were confirmed on a WestJet flight April 28 and an Air Canada flight April 29.

People in rows 1-6 on the morning WestJet flight 3375 are advised to self-monitor for symptoms.

People in rows 1-7 on the noon-hour Air Canada 8405 flight are also advised to self-monitor for symptoms.