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Northern Health records no new test-confirmed positive COVID-19 cases, province rises to 2,232

Four new deaths recorded
B.C. Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry. (via Government of B.C. Flickr)

B.C. now sits at 2,232 COVID-19 test-positive cases after an update from Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry and Minister of Health Adrian Dix this afternoon (May 5).

Henry said eight more test-positive confirmed cases have been discovered in the last 24 hours. 

Northern Health has zero new test-positive confirmed COVID-19 cases and a total of 51.

Henry added there have sadly been four more deaths recorded, bringing B.C.'s total to 121.

There are 849 cases in Vancouver Coastal Health (VCH), 1031 in Fraser Health, 124 on Vancouver Island and 177 in Interior Health.

There is one new outbreak in a long-term care facilities and two new acute care outbreaks. Currently, there are 22 active outbreaks in long-term facilities  in the Vancouver Coastal Health and Fraser Health regions. 271 residents have been affected and 171 staff. 17 outbreaks have been declared over, including the Lynn Valley Care Centre, which was one of the first major outbreaks.

The outbreak at the Mission federal correctional institute in the Fraser Valley has continued to grow. The number of positive COVID-19 is 121 inmates and 13 staff. An investigation is going and the health authority expects more people may develop symptoms in the coming days and weeks.

There are seven positive cases at the Fraser Valley Poulty plant, and 55 people have tested positive in the ongoing outbreak at Superior Poultry, a chicken processing plant in Coquitlam. There are 35 positive cases related to the initial outbreak announced a couple of weeks ago at United Poultry Company Ltd., a Vancouver processing plant. Investigations are ongoing at all plants.

A total of 1,472 cases have recovered across the province.

Yesterday, Henry released new modelling that shows society in B.C. is currently sitting at around 30 per cent of normal social interactions, a figure that could likely be doubled to 60 per cent safely.

But pushing things too far, to 80 per cent, could send COVID-19’s spread back into exponential territory.

She also said physical distancing remains the single most effective tool to fight the spread of the virus.

“It has allowed us to put the brakes on COVID-19, but we haven't stopped the car, and it is very unlikely that we are going to be able to, at least in the coming months.

Officials say it also remains to be seen if we will see a surge in COVID-19 cases in the fall when the traditional flu season begins — something they are planning for.

“This is, I believe, the end of our beginning of this pandemic,” Henry said. “We do not yet know what is going to happen, but we now have some room to increase our social connections.”

- With files from Castanet, Elana Shepert, Vancouver Is Awesome