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:
“Today, we are announcing 95 new cases, for a total of 1,948 cases in British Columbia.
“Every health region in British Columbia has patients with COVID-19: 778 are in the Vancouver Coastal Health region, 853 are in the Fraser Health region, 115 are in the Island Health region, 160 are in the Interior Health region and 42 are in the Northern Health region.
“We are saddened to report two new COVID-19 related deaths in the Vancouver Island and Vancouver Coastal health regions, for a total of 100 deaths in British Columbia. We offer our condolences to everyone who has lost their loved ones.
"There have been no new outbreaks in long-term care, assisted living or acute care in the last day. In total, 19 facilities and three acute-care units have active outbreaks, with outbreaks now declared over at 11 care facilities.
"Public health teams are also providing support to a number of community outbreaks, and we expect to continue to see more cases in the coming days as contact tracing continues.
"As of today, 18 employees have now been confirmed positive at Superior Poultry in Coquitlam, and 35 employees are confirmed positive at United Poultry in Vancouver. Additionally, there are 11 confirmed positive cases connected to the Kearl Lake project in Alberta and 118 inmates and staff confirmed positive at the Mission Institution federal correctional centre.
“To date, 1,137 people who had tested positive for COVID-19 have recovered and no longer require isolation.
“Of the total COVID-19 cases, 96 individuals are currently hospitalized, 41 of those are in intensive care, and the remaining people are recovering at home in self-isolation.
“As we continue to move forward with our COVID-19 response, it is important that we don’t leave vulnerable British Columbians behind. Everyone deserves to be safe, feel protected and have the support they need.
“We have two public health emergencies in our province, the overdose crisis and now COVID-19, making daily life an even greater struggle for many.
“Keeping a safe physical distance from others and staying home when ill are the best things we can do with COVID-19, but we recognize this can be extremely difficult for those with precarious housing.
“This is further compounded for people who may also face mental-health and addiction issues.
“To address these challenges, today the Province announced important action to provide safe housing, food and wraparound support for people living in encampments in Victoria and Vancouver.
“The addition of more than 1,000 hotel rooms provides a further means for vulnerable citizens to have access to secure housing with the necessary health-care and mental-health supports.
“This action is welcome news, reducing the immediate health and safety risks for people living in temporary encampments.
“We also know that being home more can unfortunately lead to increased stress and, in some cases, violence.
“If you are experiencing violence, we want you to know that you are not alone. VictimLinkBC is available 24/7 to provide information and services to all victims of crime, in addition to immediate crisis support for victims of family and sexual violence.
“We must do all we can to protect and support each other. We will get through this, but we will be stronger by working together to take care of our loved ones and ourselves.”
Victims of family and sexual violence can find support from VictimLinkBC by calling 1 800 563-0808 or at: http://www.bccdc.ca/health-info/diseases-conditions/covid-19/priority-populations/people-who-may-be-or-are-experiencing-violence
Victims of family and sexual violence can find support from Women’s Support Services by calling 1 855 687-1868, texting 604 652-1867 or at: https://www.bwss.org/
For the provincial health officer’s orders, notices and guidance, visit: www.gov.bc.ca/phoguidance
To learn where, when and how people with symptoms can be tested, visit: http://www.phsa.ca/staff-resources/covid-19-resources-for-staff/staff-covid-19-testing
The COVID-19 self-assessment app, which includes details about where, when and how to be tested, can be downloaded here: https://bc.thrive.health/
For information on how returning travellers can submit self-isolation plans, visit: gov.bc.ca/returningtravellers
For the latest medical updates, including case counts, prevention, risks and testing, follow @CDCofBC on Twitter or visit: http://www.bccdc.ca/
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.
For recommendations on protecting yourself and your community from COVID-19, visit: www.bccdc.ca/
For the latest videos and livestreaming of COVID-19 media availabilities, visit:
For a Chinese translation, visit: http://news.gov.bc.ca/files/2020.04.25_New_ExistingCasesCOVID-19_CN.pdf
A backgrounder follows.