B.C.’s provincial well being officer says anybody who has signs of COVID-19 can now be examined for the illness in an try and keep away from a spike in illness transmission via the neighborhood.
The announcement got here as Dr. Bonnie Henry mentioned B.C. has confirmed 52 new circumstances during the last 48 hours, for a complete of 1,699 up to now.
One other 5 folks have died because the final official replace on Saturday, bringing deaths from the novel coronavirus to 86 up to now. A complete of 104 COVID-19 sufferers are in hospital, together with 49 in intensive care, and 1,039 folks have recovered from their sickness.
The brand new circumstances confirmed Monday additionally embody seven employees returning from the Kearl Lake oilsands challenge in northern Alberta. Henry has issued a brand new order stating that anybody who has returned from the oilsands website since March 15 should self-isolate for 14 days after their return.
Outbreaks are nonetheless lively at 20 long-term care houses in B.C., the place 307 folks have been recognized with COVID-19, in addition to Bylands Nurseries in West Kelowna. Seventy-five have now examined constructive at Mission Establishment, together with 64 inmates of the federal jail.
Henry described B.C.’s new testing technique as an evolution based mostly on the altering pandemic state of affairs in B.C. She mentioned that whereas everybody can now be examined, not everybody needs to be. That implies that the check has “restricted applicability” for individuals who do not need signs of COVID-19, Henry mentioned.
Watch: Dr. Bonnie Henry talks about B.C.’s new testing technique
She additionally reiterated that whereas B.C. has had some success in bending the curve of an infection, British Columbians shouldn’t anticipate any change within the restrictions on each day life till not less than mid-Could.
“Our new regular goes to be a modification of the issues we have now had in place for the previous few months,” Henry mentioned.
Any modifications can be gradual, she burdened, and can nonetheless rely on sustaining applicable bodily distancing.
She additionally acknowledged the toll the restrictions have taken on folks’s funds and private lives, however mentioned the relative success B.C. has had in holding the pandemic beneath management shouldn’t be taken as an indication that the province has overreacted.
“We’ve got averted a significant disaster in B.C., however that is as a result of folks have executed what we have requested them to do,” Henry mentioned.
Throughout Monday’s briefing, Well being Minister Adrian Dix addressed B.C.’s dwindling provide of non-public protecting gear wanted to maintain front-line employees secure from an infection.
Dix mentioned B.C. is approaching the purpose when it will likely be mandatory to make use of various gear, however he mentioned these alternate options can be secure and efficient.
He additionally reiterated that B.C.’s hospitals are secure, and anybody who wants pressing medical consideration shouldn’t hesitate to name 911 or go to the emergency room.
Layoffs in public transit
Earlier Monday, TransLink — Metro Vancouver’s transit authority — introduced nearly 1,500 layoffs and widespread cuts in service as an effort to cease widespread monetary losses throughout the system. The cuts come days after it mentioned it was shedding $75 million each month attributable to COVID-19, whereas saying ridership has dropped by greater than 80 per cent since mid-March.
Elsewhere, Vancouver police mentioned officers can be monitoring to verify there were no small gatherings in celebration of 420, which has usually seen 1000’s of hashish lovers collect and lightweight up in celebration each April 20.
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