B.C. health officials announce 50 new COVID-19 cases, 3 more deaths
VICTORIA -- B.C. health officials say 50 new cases of the novel coronavirus have been discovered in the province since Saturday, and three more people have died.
The announcement Monday brings B.C.'s COVID-19 death toll to 103 and total number of cases to 1,998.
Thirty-nine of the new cases were discovered between Saturday and Sunday, while 11 were discovered between Sunday and Monday morning. Two of the deaths occurred in the Vancouver Coastal Health region and one in the Fraser Health region.
Coronavirus outbreaks continue at 21 long-term care facilities in the province, with three of those in acute-care facilities.
The province also continues to deal with several community outbreaks, including at two poultry plants in Vancouver and Coquitlam, where dozens of staff members have tested positive for the virus.
There are also 118 coronavirus cases at the federal Mission Institution prison, where 106 inmates and 12 correctional staff have tested positive for the virus.
The province has now identified 11 COVID-19 cases related to B.C. workers at the Kearl Lake oilsands project near Fort McMurray, Alta.
"Many BC residents continue to travel back and forth," Henry said, adding that anybody who has been at the oilsands facility since March 24, or who has been in contact with a worker there, must self-isolate.
"Despite the community outbreaks that we're seeing, there's clear evidence that our sustained efforts to follow public health measures are working here in B.C.," said provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry.
A total of 97 people in B.C. remain in hospital with COVID-19, with 36 of those in critical or intensive care.
Henry said the province is preparing to roll out its plan to allow businesses and schools to reopen and allow social interactions to resume.
"Plans are being developed here in British Columbia, and have been for the past weeks," Henry said.
"We do not have a date yet and we're not going to announce a date until we're ready and have the plans in place."
Henry said "some students" may return to classes before the end of the current school year, but nothing has been decided yet.
The provincial health officer said health officials are also preparing to deal with the pandemic in conjunction with seasonal weather-related emergencies like wildfires and floods.
"We are very aware of how we need to manage our response to this pandemic and ensure that we are able to meet the needs that we have in the province to respond to these natural disasters, as well," Henry said.
A total of 1,190 people in B.C. who contracted the virus are now considered fully recovered.