B.C. announces 13 new COVID-19 cases, no new deaths
Samples for coronavirus analysis are prepared in a medical biology laboratory in France, Saturday, March 21, 2020. (AP Photo/Francois Mori)
VICTORIA -- B.C. health officials have announced 13 new cases of COVID-19, bringing the province’s total number of cases to 2,947 since the pandemic began.
Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry and Health Minister Adrian Dix said six cases have been removed from B.C.’s total, as they were residents of a different province and will be added to other jurisdictions’ total case numbers.
“This change is consistent with regular protocol,” said Henry and Dix in a joint statement Friday.
Meanwhile, no new deaths related to the virus have been recorded in B.C. over the past 24 hours. In total, 177 people have died of COVID-19 in the province.
There are currently 162 active cases of COVID-19 in the province. Of those cases, 19 people were in hospital for treatment Friday, two of whom required critical care.
No new outbreaks have appeared in the community or in health-care facilities across the province. Meanwhile, an outbreak at Langley Lodge in the Vancouver Coastal Health region has been declared over.
However, three outbreaks continue at long-term care or assisted living facilties, and one remains at an acute-care facility.
On Thursday, health officials announced that all community outbreaks were declared over.
“While cases continue to occur in B.C., there are no active community outbreaks,” said Dix and Henry on Friday.
Health officials are reminding British Columbians to continue following provincial health guidelines, like wearing masks in close quarters, physical distancing, regular hand washing and staying home if feeling at all unwell.
B.C.’s top doctor is calling for everyone to follow these health measures, especially if they are planning to visit other areas of the province.
While concerns about U.S. visitors have been raised recently by B.C. residents and by Premier John Horgan, health officials are reminding British Columbians that some travellers may be here on essential trips.
“Remember that we don’t know everyone’s story and we are all working hard to stay safe. Be gracious, be respectful and kind,” said Dix and Henry.
At the same time, health officials say that anyone coming into B.C. or Canada from outside of the country is still subject to a mandatory two-week self-isolation period.
“Whether you live in B.C., are a visitor from another province or are in Canada for essential travel, we all have to do our part to protect our communities, our Elders and our loved ones,” said the pair.
Most cases of COVID-19 are located in B.C.’s Lower Mainland, with 1,553 recorded in the Fraser Health region and 995 cases confirmed in the Vancouver Coastal Health region since the pandemic began.
Elsewhere in the province, the Island Health region has confirmed 132 cases, the Interior Health region has seen 202 cases, and the Northern Health region has reported 65.