VICTORIA -- Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry and Health Minister Adrian Dix announced 86 new cases of COVID-19 Monday, bringing the total number of cases in B.C. to 970.

Henry also announced two new deaths in the province since the most recent government update, which was made Saturday, March 28.

The two deaths included B.C.'s first death in the community, meaning that the individual passed while not in a hospital. The province says that the death occurred in the Vancouver Coastal Health Region.

In total, the province has seen 19 deaths related to COVID-19.

Meanwhile, Dix said that 19 health centres in B.C. have been designated as primary hospital sites for COVID-19 treatment. 

The health minister added that parking would be made free at all hospitals across the province beginning April 1 as the outbreak continues.

On Monday, Dr. Henry reiterated the importance of practicing physical distancing to help reduce the spread of the novel coronavirus.

"We are not through this storm yet. We have not reached our peak," said Henry.

"We need to be 100 per cent committed, all of us, to doing our part. We need to flatten the curve," she said.

B.C.'s top doctor notes that 48 per cent of all people that tested positive for COVID-19 have now fully recovered from the virus.

"So 469 people have been released from isolation, including over 70 who were in hospital of ICU over the last few weeks," she said.

The majority of confirmed COVID-19 cases continue to be found on the lower mainland. In total, the Vancouver Coastal Health Region has 472 cases, while the Fraser Health Region has 323.

Meanwhile, the Interior Health Region has recorded 94 cases of COVID-19, the Island Health region has reported 67 cases and Northern Health has confirmed 14 cases of the novel coronavirus.

Of the 970 people in B.C. who have been diagnosed with COVID-19, 106 are in hospital for treatment, with 60 requiring critical care.

"Our entire government is doing everything we can to address this challenge, and we need every person in our province to do the same," said Henry and Dix in a joint statement.

"Let us be united in this singular purpose: in these next two crucial weeks we must be 100 per cent committed to flattening the curve and lessening the devastating impacts of this virus."