B.C. on Tuesday ordered all nightclubs and stand-alone banquet halls to be closed until further notice after 429 new cases of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) were reported since last Friday.
Health Minister Adrian Dix and Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry in a joint statement said: “In recent weeks, public health teams have been heavily focused on responding to community clusters and exposure events in these higher-risk, uncontrolled locations that have been a major source of transmission since the start of our Phase 3 reopening.
“Despite weeks of effort by public health teams, these venues are creating significant risk to everyone in B.C., and making it more challenging to protect those who are most vulnerable to serious illness.
“We need to ensure our public health teams are able to take care of everyone in British Columbia in the weeks and months ahead. As a result, the provincial health officer’s order on bars, nightclubs and banquet halls has been amended. Effective today, all nightclubs and stand-alone banquet halls are ordered closed until further notice.
“Liquor sales in all bars, pubs and restaurants must cease at 10 p.m. and they must close at 11 p.m., unless providing a full meal service, in which case they may stay open, but may not serve liquor until 11 a.m. the following day.
“Music or other background sounds, such as from televisions in bars, lounges, pubs and restaurants, must be no louder than the volume of normal conversation.”
Dix and Henry announced a total of 429 new cases, including 12 epi-linked cases, since last Friday, for a total of 6,591 cases in British Columbia.
They said: “Today, we are providing case updates for four 24-hour reporting periods. In the first reporting period from September 4 to 5 we had 123 new cases. September 5 to 6, we had 116 new cases. September 6 to 7 we had 107 new cases and in the last 24 hours, we have had a further 83 new cases.”
There are 1,386 active cases of COVID-19 in the province, 3,063 people who are under active public health monitoring as a result of identified exposure to known cases and 4,978 people who tested positive have recovered.
Currently, 32 individuals are hospitalized with COVID-19, 12 of whom are in intensive care. The remaining people with COVID-19 are recovering at home in self-isolation.
Since the start of the pandemic, there have been 2,249 cases of COVID-19 in the Vancouver Coastal Health region, 3,428 in the Fraser Health region, 184 in the Island Health region, 460 in the Interior Health region, 186 in the Northern Health region and 84 cases of people who reside outside of Canada.
There have been two new COVID-19 related deaths, for a total of 213 deaths in the province.
There are three new health-care facility outbreaks at Burnaby General Hospital and Rideau Retirement Centre in the Fraser Health region, and at Holy Family Hospital long-term care facility, which is a second outbreak. In total, 11 long-term care or assisted-living facilities and three acute-care facilities have active outbreaks.
There have been no new community outbreaks, although there continue to be community exposure events.
Alerts are posted on the BC Centre for Disease Control’s (BCCDC) website, as well as on health authorities’ websites, providing details on where the potential exposure occurred and what actions to take – whether you need to self-isolate or monitor for symptoms.