Adrian Dix, Minister of Health, and Dr. Bonnie Henry, B.C.'s provincial health officer, have issued the following joint statement regarding updates on the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) response in British Columbia:
“We are announcing 29 new cases for a total of 1,647 cases of COVID-19 in British Columbia.
“Every health region in British Columbia has patients with COVID-19: 686 are in the Vancouver Coastal Health region, 680 are in the Fraser Health region, 97 are in the Island Health region, 150 are in the Interior Health region and 34 are in the Northern Health region.
“We are saddened to report three new COVID-19 related deaths in the Fraser Health region, for a total of 81 deaths in British Columbia. We offer our condolences to everyone who has lost their loved ones.
“There have been no new outbreaks in the last day. In total, 20 long-term care and assisted-living facilities, and one acute-care unit have active outbreaks. Outbreaks have been declared over at five facilities.
“There are now 70 cases of COVID-19 associated with the Mission Institution federal correctional centre. Fraser Health officials continue to work with Correction Services Canada to manage this outbreak.
“To date, 987 people who had tested positive for COVID-19 have recovered and no longer require isolation.
“Of the total COVID-19 cases, 115 individuals are hospitalized and 54 of those are in intensive care. The remaining people with COVID-19 are recovering at home in self-isolation.
“British Columbians have listened to the orders and restrictions. You have shown your compassion and commitment to protecting loved ones, Elders and our health-care workers.
“However, we cannot lose sight of the important fact that we continue to have new cases and tragically, new deaths. The hurricane is still raging, and the risk of a spike in our curve is still very much a concern.
“The easing of restrictions will be gradual and slow because of the nature of the COVID-19 virus and the up-to-two-week delay in the onset of symptoms. This is why we will be watching the curve closely over the coming week to see what the impacts of the recent holiday weekend may be.
“A thoughtful and careful approach will be taken, and only If we continue to see sustained improvement will we be able to introduce modifications. The earliest we would anticipate any changes would be mid-May.
“Right now, we must all continue to hold the line. We must all continue to show kindness and care to those around us and do all we can to continue to flatten our curve.”
The latest modelling presentation and information is available online: https://news.gov.bc.ca/files/COVID19_Update_Modelling-BROADCAST.pdf
For information on how returning travellers can submit self-isolation plans, visit: http://gov.bc.ca/returningtravellers
For the latest medical updates, including case counts and information on how to protect yourself and your community, visit: http://www.bccdc.ca/
Or follow @CDCofBC on Twitter.
For the provincial health officer's orders, notices and guidance, visit: www.gov.bc.ca/phoguidance
For non-health related information, including financial, child care and education supports, travel, transportation and essential service information, visit: www.gov.bc.ca/covid19
Or call 1 888 COVID19 (1 888 268-4319) between 7:30 a.m. and 8 p.m. (Pacific time), seven days a week.
To use the online COVID-19 self-assessment tool or to download the app, visit: https://bc.thrive.health/
For the latest videos and livestreaming of COVID-19 media availabilities, visit:
For a Chinese translation: https://news.gov.bc.ca/files/2020.04.18_New_ExistingCasesCOVID-19_CN.pdf
For a French translation: https://news.gov.bc.ca/files/2020.04.18_New_ExistingCasesCOVID-19_FR.pdf
A backgrounder follows.