HEALTH Minister Adrian Dix and Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry on Thursday announced 55 new cases of COVID-19, for a total of 1,121 cases in British Columbia.
Every health region in British Columbia has patients with COVID-19: 525 are in the Vancouver Coastal health region, 386 are in the Fraser Health region, 72 are in the Island Health region, 121 are in the Interior Health region and 17 are in the Northern Health region.
In the last 24 hours, there have been six deaths in the Vancouver Coastal, Fraser and Island health regions. There have been 31 COVID-19 related deaths in British Columbia so far. The majority have been residents of long-term care.
Dix and Henry said: “A new community outbreak of COVID-19 has been detected with an inmate in a correctional centre in the Interior Health region. BC Corrections has implemented response protocols and the inmate has been isolated.
“The Provincial Health Services Authority, which is responsible for health care in B.C.’s correctional centres, is working with the Interior public health team to investigate and undertake contact tracing.
“There have been no new reported cases in long-term care and assisted living facilities in the last day.
“Residents at long-term care and assisted-living homes are very vulnerable to COVID-19. One of the most important things we can do to protect them, and those caring for them, is to make it possible for workers to provide services at a single location, reducing the risk of transmission between facilities.
“We are working diligently with unions and employer groups to do this, while ensuring that these workers are at least ‘made whole’. They are responding courageously to monumental challenges during this unprecedented time and deserve our respect and support.
“To date, 641 people who had tested positive for COVID-19 have recovered and no longer have isolation requirements.
“Of the total COVID-19 cases, 149 individuals are hospitalized, 68 of those are in intensive care, and the remaining people with COVID-19 are recovering at home in self-isolation.
“We continue to see patients with serious illness requiring hospitalization for COVID-19. This tells us that the risk remains high for everyone in British Columbia.
“Without exception, all travellers returning to Canada must immediately comply with the federal government’s quarantine order and isolate for 14 days.
“Each of us must also continue to follow good hand hygiene, stay home as much as possible and stay apart with physical distancing.
“In the coming weeks there will be a number of major religious celebrations on the calendar. Just as we have seen around the world, we call on our faith leaders to postpone all in-person gatherings and use the many tools we have available to connect and celebrate with followers in other ways.
“We must stand united and working together, we must follow the orders and precautions we have in place, and we must do all we can protect our province.”