B.C. reports 83 new COVID-19 cases, 2 new cases in Island Health

B.C. reports 83 new COVID-19 cases, 2 new cases in Island Health
Province of BC/File photo
Deputy Provincial Health Officer Dr. Réka Gustafson provide an update on novel coronavirus (COVID-19) on August 17, 2020.

B.C. health officials say there are 83 new cases of COVID-19 in B.C. as of Tuesday, with two new cases in Island Health.

Adrian Dix, Minister of Health, and Dr. Réka Gustafson, B.C.’s deputy provincial health officer, released Tuesday’s numbers in a statement.

B.C. has now had a total of 4,677 cases since the pandemic began. There are 775 active cases of COVID-19 in the province, and 3,704 people who tested positive have recovered.

Island Health now has seven active cases. A total of 144 people who have had COVID-19 in Island Health have recovered and there have been five deaths since the start of the pandemic.

Island Health's COVID-19 cases as of Aug. 18, 2020. (Island Health)

Island Health’s COVID-19 cases as of Aug. 18, 2020. (Island Health)

As of Tuesday, six people with COVID-19 are in hospital (an increase of two from Aug. 17), with four in intensive care (no change from Aug. 17) And 2,326 people are under active public health monitoring as a result of identified exposure to known cases, an increase of 40 people from Monday.

Since the start of the pandemic, there have been 1,447 cases of COVID-19 in the Vancouver Coastal Health region, 2,473 in the Fraser Health region, 156 in the Island Health region, 407 in the Interior Health region, 120 in the Northern Health region and 74 cases of people who reside outside of Canada.

No new COVID-19 deaths were reported on Tuesday. The COVID-19 death toll remains at 198.

There have been no new health-care facility or community outbreaks.

In total, nine long-term care or assisted-living facilities and one acute-care facility have active outbreaks. They are:

  • Arbutus Care Centre long-term care facility in Vancouver Coastal Health
  • Holy Family Hospital long-term care facility in Vancouver Coastal Health
  • Richmond Lions Manor long-term care facility in Vancouver Coastal Health
  • Czorny Alzheimer Centre long-term care facility in Fraser Health
  • Dania Home long-term care facility in Fraser Health
  • Derby Manor long-term care facility in Fraser Health
  • George Derby Centre long-term care facility in Fraser Health
  • Maple Ridge Seniors Village assisted living facility in Fraser Health
  • New Vista Care Home long-term care facility in Fraser Health

“We need every new case of COVID-19 to be identified, traced and contained as quickly as possible to keep our curve where we need it to be,” Dix and Gustafson said.

“Public health teams are actively working in our communities, and all of us also have an important role to play. Hundreds of people are now self-isolating and under care, and we can support them to do that well. Because the virus can spread with very mild symptoms, it is essential that anyone advised to self-isolate stays home, and stays away from others, for the full 14-day period.”

Dix and Gustafson say it’s important for people who have COVID-19 or have been in contact with someone who has COVID-19 to answer calls from public health teams quickly and provide as much information as possible.

“Quickly isolating people who have COVID-19 and reaching their contacts is one of the most effective ways of controlling spread,” Dix and Gustafson said.

They also reminded people that while seeing friends may seem safe, if a person is in close contact with an elderly family member, those visits with friends may be putting the senior at risk.

“Let’s use our layers of protection, giving ourselves and those around us the space to stay safe no matter what we are doing or where we may be. This is how we protect our communities and stay strong,” Dix and Gustafson said.

Also on Tuesday, B.C. again extended its provincial state of emergency for another two weeks due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The state of emergency allows Mike Farnworth, Minister of Public Safety and Solicitor General, to continue to use extraordinary powers under the Emergency Program Act to support the province’s COVID-19 pandemic response.

To see B.C.’s COVID-19 numbers by day and health authority, along with testing numbers and recoveries, visit the B.C. COVID-19 dashboard. The numbers are updated at 4:30 p.m. PT each weekday.

To see a list of public COVID-19 exposures in the province, including links to exposures listed on health authority websites, visit the B.C. Centre for Disease Control website here.

According to data collected by Johns Hopkins University and Medicine, global COVID-19 cases are approaching 22 million and the global death toll is now more than 776,000.

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