British Columbia set another record for new COVID-19 cases on Tuesday at 717 and also reported an additional 11 deaths.
One of the new cases is epidemiologically-linked, meaning a person who was never tested but presumed to have COVID-19 because they developed symptoms and were close contacts of a laboratory-confirmed case.
Of the new cases, 16 are in the Island Health region, 177 in the Vancouver Coastal Health region, 484 in the Fraser Health region, 18 in the Interior Health region, 21 in the Northern Health region and one new case of a person who resides outside of Canada.
The eleven deaths reported in the last 24 hours brings B.C.’s COVID-19 death toll to 310.
Dr. Bonnie Henry, B.C.’s provincial health officer, and Adrian Dix, Minister of Health, released Tuesday’s numbers in a statement.
B.C. has now had a total of 23,661 cases since the start of the pandemic.
“There are 6,589 active cases of COVID-19 in the province (310 more than Nov. 16).
There are 198 individuals currently hospitalized with COVID-19 (17 more than Nov. 16), 63 of whom are in intensive care (six more than Nov. 16).
And 10,960 people are under active public health monitoring as a result of identified exposure to known cases (32 more than Nov. 16) and 16,469 people who tested positive have recovered.
There is one new health-care facility outbreak at Tsawaayuss-Rainbow Gardens in Port Alberni in the Island Health region. There have been no new community outbreaks.
“We have seen an increase in new cases on Vancouver Island, in the Interior and in the North, many of which are connected to travel to and from the Lower Mainland. That is why is it important that we stay local and travel less right now,” Henry and Dix said in Tuesday’s statement.
“When we spend time inside with people from outside of our household, our work group or school cohort, the risks increase for everyone. Instead, let’s stay connected virtually and make it a safer winter for all of us.”
Island Health now has 114 active cases: 34 in the southern Vancouver Island area, 60 in the central Vancouver Island area and 20 in the northern Vancouver Island area.
A total of 277 people have recovered.
The health authority has had 397 cases since the start of the pandemic and six deaths. According to the BC Centre for Disease Control COVID-19 dashboard, two people with COVID-19 are in hospital in Island Health, with one in intensive care.
Southern Vancouver Island includes the Greater Victoria region, Southern Gulf Islands and the Port Renfrew area.
Central Vancouver Island includes the Cowichan Valley, Duncan, Nanaimo, Parksville, Port Alberni and Tofino areas.