COVID-19 numbers continue to rise rapidly and health officials are pleading with British Columbians to take a step back.
This afternoon (Nov. 12) at a live briefing, Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry announced there have been another 1,130 diagnosed cases over a two-day reporting period:
- 536 = Tuesday (Nov. 10) to Wednesday (Nov. 11)
- 594 = Wednesday (Nov. 11) to today (Nov. 12)
- New B.C. single-day record
Of the newly recorded cases, Henry said Northern Health tallied 23 of the cases, bringing the authority's total since March to 499.
There have been four new deaths related to the virus in the last 48 hours, which moves B.C.'s fatality rate to 288.
There are 11,091 people listed as active for COVID-19; 155 are in hospital and 44 of whom are in critical care.
Active health monitoring has risen to 5,793 people who have recently come into contact with someone previously infected with the virus, while 14,089 have recovered.
On Nov. 7 at 10 p.m., specific restrictions for Fraser and Vancouver Coastal Healths came into effect for two weeks, as the two authorities are still seeing major hot spots of rises in cases.
"Right now, it is very important that everyone in these areas of Vancouver Coastal and Fraser Health significantly reduce their social interactions," she said.
"There are to be no social gatherings of any size with anyone other than your immediate household."
The order includes indoor gatherings of fewer than 50 people, even in controlled settings, so it supersedes the province's mass-gathering order that it has had in place for some time.
"Funerals and weddings may proceed with your immediate household but there are to be no associated receptions inside or outside your home or at any public or community-based venues," she said.
"This is a time-limited order but this is what we need to do now."
With regard to travel, Henry said she is strongly recommending that travel into and out of areas of Vancouver Coastal and Fraser Health should be limited to essential travel only.
"Those who live outside these areas should not visit unless it is urgently required, or essential, and travel through only when needed," Henry said.
"Travel for sports, into and out of this region, is suspended for this period of time."
Recreation centers, businesses or other organizations that organize or operating indoor group physical activities were also told to stop operations.
Those updated safety plans would need to be approved by local medical health officers, she added.
"This includes spin classes, yoga classes, group fitness, dance classes, or other group indoor activities, where people are increasing their heart rate," she said. "We have seen repeatedly, not just here, but around the world, that these are venues that we see rapid spread of this virus, even with people who don't recognize that they are ill."
These two-week orders are set to end on Nov. 23 at 12 p.m.
There are 155 people in hospital, with 44 of those currently in ICU/critical care. A total of 14,089 have recovered #covid19 #COVIDbc #covid19bc #cityofpg #covid #pandemic #bc #bcpoli #bced @PGMatters— Jess Balzer (@jessicajbalzer) November 12, 2020
Twelve schools in Northern Health have been flagged for possible COVID-19 exposure:
- Hudson's Hope Elementary-Junior Secondary - Oct. 26-Nov. 4, 2020
- Ron Brent Elementary School - Oct. 30, 2020
- Roosevelt Park Elementary School (SD52) - Oct. 21-22, 2020
- Immaculate Conception School (Independent, Diocese of Prince George) - Oct. 21-23, 2020
- Fort Nelson Secondary School (SD81) - Oct. 15-16, 2020
- Notre Dame School (Private) - Oct. 13-14, 2020
- Prince George Secondary School (SD57) - Oct. 2, 2020
- Dawson Creek Secondary School - South Peace Campus (SD59) - Sept. 23-25, 2020
- David Hoy Elementary School (SD91) - Sept. 17-18, 2020
- Quesnel Junior Secondary School (SD28) - Sept. 10-11, 15-18, 2020
- Nak’albun Elementary School (Independent) - Sept. 16-18, 2020
- Ecole Frank Ross Elementary School (SD59) - Sept. 10-11, 2020
Should a student or teacher receive a positive COVID-19 test in any case, Northern Heath's school notification process is as follows:
- Contact tracing is initiated to determine how the individual was infected and who they were in close contact with
- We identify and notify close contacts who may be at an increased risk, and advise them to self-isolate and monitor for symptoms for 14 days
- Only Public Health can determine who is a close contact
- Learning groups, friends or other connections may not be determined to be a close contact
- Public Health staff works closely with the school and school district throughout the case and contact management process to maintain close communication with the school community.
- with files from Kyle Balzer, PrinceGeorgeMatters, and Glen Kordstrom, Business In Vancouver