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COVID-19 claims 18 more lives in BC

By Don Fennell

Published 4:35 PST, Fri January 8, 2021

A day after BC extended its public health orders prohibiting gatherings and other events through Feb. 5, the province Friday reported 617 new cases of COVID-19 and 18 more deaths related to the virus.

In a joint statement, provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry and Health Minister Adrian Dix reiterated their plea for people to continue to be extra mindful.

"As new COVID-19 cases continue to emerge in communities throughout the province, we must all recommit to our efforts to slow down transmission.

We can only do this through our collective commitment to stay local, only spend time with our immediate household outside of work or school, to respect one another by giving others the space to stay safe, and ensuring we are wearing our masks in all indoor, public spaces,” they said. "Most British Columbians have been doing their part, and we know it is frustrating when a few people put so many others at risk. Despite this, it is important to know your sustained efforts are saving lives. It will get us that much closer to the days without COVID-19.

"We all want our efforts to count and have an impact that will last. We will get through this and things will get better. Show your friends and neighbours they can count on you to make the right choices, every day, and together we will see brighter days once again."

There are currently 56,632 cases in BC, with 6,118 of those active.There are 358 individuals currently hospitalized with COVID-19, 75 of whom are in intensive care. The remaining people are recovering at home in self-isolation. Sadly, there have been 988 deaths related to COVID-19.

"Currently, 8,755 people are under active public health monitoring as a result of identified exposure to known cases and a further 48,205 people who tested positive have recovered,” Henry and Dix explained. "Since we last reported, we have had 139 new cases of COVID-19 in the Vancouver Coastal Health region, 320 new cases in the Fraser Health region, 27 in the Island Health region, 81 in the Interior Health region, 49 in the Northern Health region and one new case of a person who resides outside of Canada.”

To date, 46,259 people have received a COVID-19 vaccine in the province.

“Our focus is to ensure we safely deliver the vaccines as quickly as possible to communities across the province, using all available supply,” they said.

No new healthcare facility outbreaks were reported, and the outbreaks at Amenida Senior Community, North Peace Seniors Housing, Rotary Manor, Royal Arch Masonic Home and Tabor Home are over.

"Long-term care outbreaks have been at the forefront of our minds and our hearts since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic,” the health officials said.

They also strongly recommended that everyone limit their travel between communities and outside of the province unless it is absolutely essential for work or medical care.

For the latest updates, guidance and information on COVID-19 and where to get tested, visit http://www.bccdc.ca/.

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