B.C. officials announce 236 COVID-19 cases over three days, say penalties coming

B.C. officials announce 236 COVID-19 cases over three days, say penalties coming

VANCOUVER — Health Minister Adrian Dix says the B.C. government will announce stricter penalties this week for those who flout public health rules as COVID-19 cases climb in the province.

Officials announced 236 new cases since Friday during a briefing Monday, including the second highest single-day increase of 100 since the pandemic began.

Hospitalizations decreased from 12 cases to four.

Deputy provincial health officer Dr. Reka Gustafson said most of those testing positive are young, which suggests the province has done a relatively good job of protecting the most vulnerable.

However, she said young people are more likely to have mild infections and may not realize they have COVID-19 before they spread it to others, adding that severe infections can occur at any age.

Anyone with even a slight symptom should stay home from work and gatherings, and anyone who has been advised that they’ve been in contact with a case should isolate for 14 days, even if no symptoms develop, she said.

“You could easily spread the virus to someone who is vulnerable.”

The new infections bring the total active cases to 743. There have been 4,594 confirmed cases since the pandemic began.

Two more people have died from the virus for a total of 198 deaths.

While there are no new community outbreaks, the health authority in northern B.C. issued an alert after confirming 17 cases linked to a religious gathering held between July 30 and Aug. 2.

Anyone who attended the It Is Time event in Deadwood, Alta., is asked to monitor themselves, self-isolate and seek testing if any COVID-19 symptoms develop.

“This pandemic is not ending soon, this pandemic that we’re all tired of,” Dix said.

Officials now expect it to continue “well through 2021 into 2022,” he added.

“This new normal is going to be in place for a long time and the way that we address that, the way that we deal with that as a society, inevitably, has to be by choice and by engagement.”

Solicitor General Mike Farnworth will announce stricter penalties later this week for those who break public health rules designed to reduce transmission of the novel coronavirus, said Dix.

Officials are most concerned about private parties and Dix urged people to act responsibly.

“The places where there’s the greatest danger are private parties where alcohol is involved and it’s inside,” he said.

Dix said surveillance and enforcement also have a role. Several bars, clubs and restaurants have closed both voluntarily and involuntarily following exposures to the virus.

A weekend review of 100 banquet halls on the Lower Mainland also identified six as subjects of concern, he said.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Aug. 17, 2020.

Amy Smart, The Canadian Press


Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Central Alberta woman receives North American award for leading Red Deer Regional Health Foundation

Manon Therriault at the Red Deer Regional Health Foundation has always embraced… Continue reading

Families displaced after Red Deer fire Sunday

A structure fire displaced two families in north Red Deer Sunday morning.… Continue reading

End of CERB means uncertainty for some, new system for others

In its place is employment insurance, which the government says the majority of people will go on

The latest numbers on COVID-19 in Canada for Sept. 27

The latest numbers of confirmed COVID-19 cases in Canada as of 4:00… Continue reading

QUIZ: Do you know what’s on TV?

Fall is normally the time when new television shows are released

Nearly 1M who died of COVID-19 also illuminated treatment

The nearly 1 million people around the world who have lost their… Continue reading

Toronto health officer closes 3 restaurants as result of COVID contact tracing

Toronto’s top public health official has ordered the closure of three downtown… Continue reading

Canadian ski resorts wrestle with pandemic-vs.-profit dilemma as COVID-19 persists

CALGARY — Canadian ski resort operators planning for a season that begins… Continue reading

Tenille Townes, Dean Brody and Brett Kissel top nominees at tonight’s CCMA Awards

OTTAWA — Tenille Townes could be lined up for some major wins… Continue reading

Horgan, Wilkinson trade barbs over MSP premiums, health care at campaign stops

TERRACE, B.C. — Health care in the era of COVID-19 took centre… Continue reading

Watchdog to investigate fatal Winnipeg crash that sent two kids to hospital

Winnipeg police say a woman has died and five others — including… Continue reading

The ‘relentless underdog’: Green Leader Sonia Furstenau ready for uphill battle

Green Leader Sonia Furstenau was driving Monday when she turned on the… Continue reading

Mi’kmaq power, inside and beyond Ottawa, stronger than in past fishery battles

HALIFAX — When Jaime Battiste was in his early 20s, cable news… Continue reading

Most Read