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Province of British Columbia
JOINT STATEMENT
For Immediate Release
2020HLTH0091-000518
March 18, 2020
Ministry of Health
Office of the Provincial Health Officer
Joint statement on Province of B.C.’s COVID-19 response, latest updates

VICTORIA – Adrian Dix, Minister of Health, and Dr. Bonnie Henry, B.C.'s provincial health officer, have issued the following joint statement regarding updates on the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) response in British Columbia:

“We are announcing 45 new cases of COVID-19, for a total of 231 cases in British Columbia. Of the new cases, 13 are currently hospitalized, seven are in intensive care, five have recovered and the remaining patients are at home in isolation.

“Of the new cases, one patient is a resident of the Haro Park Centre, an independent housing, assisted living and long-term care centre in Vancouver. Vancouver Coastal public health and infection control teams are on site.

“Of the total cases, 144 are in Vancouver Coastal, 58 are in Fraser, 16 are on Vancouver Island, nine are in Interior and four are in Northern health regions.

“We are reminding British Columbians that there are provincial health officer orders in place restricting travel, mass gatherings and operations of bars and clubs, in addition to requirements for social distancing in restaurants and indefinite suspension of school classes.

“The orders are a last measure to protect British Columbians and slow the transmission of COVID-19. While they are temporary, it is extremely important that everyone in our province abide by these orders.

“The provincial health officer can and will compel peace officers to enforce orders if that is required, but we believe it is far better to take precautions on a voluntary basis.

“We continue to remind people of the three things they can do to help all of us: first, use hand hygiene, second, maintain social or physical distancing, and third, stay at home if you are sick or at high risk for serious illness.

“Canada Blood Services has alerted us to an urgent need for new donations to maintain supply. Additional screening and social distancing measures are in place, and it is safe to donate blood. This is an important way to make a difference at this critical time.

“New resources are being made available every day, including:

“The magnitude of impact of COVID-19 on British Columbians cannot be overstated. However, by working together and supporting each other, we are confident we will get through this.”

Learn More:

For the most up-to-date non-medical information, including the latest travel restrictions and provincial and federal programs, call 1 888 COVID-19 or visit: www.gov.bc.ca/COVID19

To view all the provincial health officer's orders, visit: https://www2.gov.bc.ca/gov/content/health/about-bc-s-health-care-system/office-of-the-provincial-health-officer/current-health-topics

For more information on the updated testing strategy and self-isolation, visit: http://www.bccdc.ca/health-info/diseases-conditions/covid-19/testing-isolation 

For recommendations on protecting yourself and your community, visit: www.bccdc.ca/covid19

For the COVID-19 pandemic preparedness and planning materials, visit: https://www2.gov.bc.ca/gov/content/health/about-bc-s-health-care-system/office-of-the-provincial-health-officer/current-health-topics/pandemic-influenza

For more information and latest updates on COVID-19, follow the BC Centre for Disease Control on Twitter @CDCofBC or visit its website: http://www.bccdc.ca/

To make an appointment to donate, download the GiveBlood app, call 1 888 2-DONATE (1 888 236-6283) or book online: https://blood.ca

For the latest audio clips of COVID-19 media availabilities, visit: https://soundcloud.com/bcgov

 
Contact:
 
Ministry of Health
Communications
250 952-1887 (media line)
 

 
Connect with the Province of B.C. at: news.gov.bc.ca/connect