New record 1,959 COVID-19 cases in B.C. since Friday; 9 deaths | iNFOnews | Thompson-Okanagan's News Source

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New record 1,959 COVID-19 cases in B.C. since Friday; 9 deaths

Dr. Bonnie Henry Nov. 16, 2020.
Image Credit: FACEBOOK/BC Government
November 16, 2020 - 3:54 PM

B.C. health officials today announced a record-breaking 1,959 new cases of COVID-19 since Friday and nine more deaths.

Also reaching new heights, 181 British Columbians are now hospitalized with the disease, 57 of which are in intensive care.

“We have come through a wave and we're now in the midst of our second and it has become even more challenging,” Dr. Bonnie Henry said today, Nov. 16. “The virus is not stopping.“

Dr. Henry said that she and other health officials are doing what they can to put in health orders that will curb the spread of COVID-19 but individual efforts are what will keep schools and workplaces open as well as hospitals functioning properly.

“It is these small yet essential efforts that all of us do that have a big collective impact,” she said. These things include staying home when ill and not having social gatherings, as well as physical distancing, wearing masks and hand-washing.

While the Lower Mainland has driven transmission rates, there has also been growth throughout B.C. and that may be attributed to travel in and out of the hardest-hit areas. Travel is something that Dr. Henry is also asking people to curtail.

Of the new cases since Friday, 455 people were diagnosed in Vancouver Coastal Health, 1,361 in the Fraser Health region, 41 people in Vancouver Island, 87 in Interior Health region, 14 people in the Northern Health region, and one case in a person who resides outside of Canada.

“We’re in a much different place than we were in April, but in some ways, we need to be thinking the same vibe as we were in April,” Dr. Henry said. 

While plans for places like restaurants and schools have helped stop transmission in those spaces, less structured social gatherings are driving the spread.

“We’ve learned that this virus spreads quite easily in the colder weather, it spreads indoors.”

So, she said, when we're coming together with people indoors, not keeping our distance and not wearing masks, those are settings where we're seeing transmission.

“In terms of our social connections we need to start shrinking back to our pandemic bubble, keeping our family close, having our close contact with our family, but not having those unsafe connections with larger numbers of people, whether it's in our home, whether it's at the athletic club,” she said.

“So that's what I meant by needing to go back, needing to refocus our social interactions.”

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