BC. marks 11 additional deaths from COVID-19, but smallest daily increase in cases in 4 weeks

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In her 50th daily update on the spread of COVID-19 in British Columbia, provincial health worker Dr. Bonnie Henry announced 45 new confirmed virus cases in the province on Monday, bringing the total to 1,490.

Another 11 people died, bringing the number of deaths to 69. The majority of deaths in the province remain linked to long-term care homes.

The update provided on Monday reflects two 24-hour periods, with 25 new cases detected between Saturday and Sunday, and 20 new cases detected between Sunday and Monday – two of the lowest daily percentage increases since March 6, when the province started reporting new cases every day.

Henry said the daily update, which has become a must visit for many across the province, will continue in British Columbia. continues to manage the crisis.

“We remain committed to maintaining these updates for as long as necessary,” she said.

“We also ask you to continue to hold the line, to continue to do what we do, especially for young people and children – remember that it is not forever, but it is for the moment. “

Too early to set the date for loosening restrictions

Henry also said that BC should consider a number of factors before setting a date for the restrictions to be relaxed, including the status of cases in neighboring provinces, the ability to monitor the border with the United States, and to quickly detect outbreaks, and the health capacity of British Columbia. care system.

“The basics, hand hygiene, safe removal, ensuring that our workplaces can have better cleaning, working from home … these are things that will be in place for a while” she said.

“These are things we are going to have to keep doing over the next few months until we have enough collective immunity so that we don’t get a dramatic increase and a rapid increase in infections in our community. “

Henry and Minister of Health Adrian Dix, who warned British Columbia residents against all non-essential travel, also commented on traffic and queues around the ferries over the long weekend, which have become a point of tension and frustration.

Dix said that while there are “no doubt” people traveling unnecessarily, BC Ferries’ traffic has decreased significantly compared to the same period last year – up to 90% on some major routes .

“One of the reasons why the focus is on people who don’t seem to follow the rules is the amazing work done by everyone. … Of course, it’s not perfect. I remain amazed and respectful of all British Columbians who sacrifice so much for this cause. , ” he said.

Henry and Dix were also invited to comment on a video posted on social media over the long weekend, which showed a man calling on people to challenge the directives to stay at home.

Dix said that the person who posted the video represented “marginal” views that were not widely shared by the majority of people.

Henry said she does not plan to introduce new restrictions following the actions of people “trying to make a name for themselves for doing things they deem provocative.”

“I think it’s important that people get out. I think it’s important for our mental health, for our physical health, for our family health. So I encourage people to get out – but to do it in a way that maintains that We know this virus cannot magically jump between people, “she said.

“Rather than closing beaches, I think we need to make sure people are aware of the rules. We need to step up the application of some of these rules. “

There are currently 137 people hospitalized, 58 of whom are in intensive care. So far, a total of 926 people have recovered from the virus.

Henry reported on an ongoing outbreak at a federal correctional facility in Mission, British Columbia, where the number of cases increased to 35, with eight people hospitalized.

“This is, of course, a big concern for us,” said Henry. “Our priority is to protect everyone in the facility. “

Henry said that despite an unprecedented demand for personal protective equipment, British Columbia has continued to stock up enough for the time being, in part thanks to a donation from Alberta.

“We have enough PPE to meet the current demand, but we are not yet clear,” she said.

Henry said B.C. is not currently purchasing any rapid test kits developed by Spartan Bioscience, as the Ontario-based company already has orders until the summer. The nucleic acid test, which detects virus RNA, is already underway in British Columbia. laboratories, although the province may consider increasing capacity at a later date.

If you have a story related to COVID-19 that we should pursue that affects British Columbians, please email us at [email protected]

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