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Tam Concerned By Rising COVID-19 Cases Nationally – country94.ca

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Canada’s Chief Public Health Officer is concerned with the rising trend of COVID-19 case numbers.

Theresa Tam gave an update on national COVID-19 modelling, which shows the country is “at a crossroads” in its pandemic-response.

At a press conference Tuesday afternoon, Tam said the rate of contact in the country needs to decrease in order to suppress the rise of new cases.

The Chief Public Health Officer cited other countries as evidence that a second surge of the virus can exceed the initial wave.

As of Tuesday afternoon, more than 145,000 cases of COVID-19 had been diagnosed, and at least 9,228 people have died since the pandemic was declared.

Last week, Ontario saw the reinstatement of stricter caps on indoor and outdoor gatherings, but Tam says they aren’t the only province seeing an uptick in instances of the virus.

“Although the pattern of epidemic curves varies by region, all provinces west of the Atlantic region are showing increasing incidents of COVID-19,” Tam said.

Tam says the current surge in cases hasn’t yet led to a big rise in COVID-related deaths, or hospitalizations, but those numbers often lag behind the discovery of new cases.

Since June, Canadians in their 20s have been the leading factor in rising case numbers across the country.

Tam says that while younger patients seem to be less at risk of fatal outcomes, the increase in carriers can lead to spread to other demographics.

“Ongoing circulation of the virus in younger, more mobile and socially-connected adults builds a reservoir for the virus,” Tam said. “Increasing the risk of spread to individuals and population at a higher risk of severe outcomes, and threatening our ability to maintain epidemic control.”

As society continues to await an effective COVID-19 vaccine, the goal of world governments continues to be to maintain the number of caseloads at a low enough volume so as not to overwhelm emergency room capacity.

Tam did say that the number of cases stemming from each outbreak appears to be in decline.

“A review of publicly-reported outbreaks in long-term care settings over the course of the epidemic suggests that the number of cases per outbreak has declined from over 30 cases per outbreak in April, to less than five cases per outbreak in August.”

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272 new cases of COVID-19 reported in B.C., with zero new in Island Health – CHEK

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British Columbia’s health officials have revealed that there have been 272 new cases of COVID-19 over the last 24 hours, with zero of those cases linked to the Island Health region.

The total number of active cases in British Columbia has increased to 2,390 – a rise of 46 from October 29 – while 6,003 residents remain under active public health monitoring.

On Friday, there was one additional death related to the virus, meaning the provincial total over the course of the pandemic is 263.

Dr. Bonnie Henry says that there are currently 78 individuals hospitalized from COVID-19 in B.C. – a decrease of eight since Thursday – with 25 people in intensive care (increasing by one from Thursday).

As of Friday, the total number of cases in British Columbia over the course of the pandemic has been 14,381.

Since the start of the pandemic, there have been 4,664 cases of COVID-19 in the Vancouver Coastal Health region, 8,219 in the Fraser Health region, 256 in the Island Health region, 741 in the Interior Health region, 412 in the Northern Health region and 89 cases of people who reside outside of Canada.

Dr. Bonnie Henry and Health Minister Adrian Dix said in a written statement that there have been three new health-care facility outbreaks as of Friday as well. Outbreaks have been reported at Hawthorne Seniors Care Community, CareLife Fleetwood and Queen’s Park Hospital unit 3C NMSK 2.

While three new outbreaks were reported on Friday, another three came to an end. The outbreaks at Fort Langley Seniors Community, The Village and Sunset Manor and Good Samaritan Victoria Heights have been declared over. In total, 24 long-term care or assisted-living facilities and two acute-care facilities have active outbreaks.

Island Health

Active cases within the Island Health region have decreased to 8.

Of those active cases, three are in the South Vancouver Island area, three are in the Central Vancouver Island region, while two are located on the northern parts of Vancouver Island.

Island Health’s COVID-19 numbers as of Oct. 30, 2020. (Island Health)

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.

Northern Vancouver Island goes from the Comox Valley to Port Hardy but also includes surrounding areas like Alert Bay and Sointula.

Halloween

With Halloween coming up this weekend, Health officials also issued a reminder to British Columbians to stay safe and keep gatherings small.

“As we all enjoy Halloween tomorrow, make it about the treats and not the tricks. Respect homes that are choosing not to participate this year and give everyone the space to stay safe, both indoors and outdoors,” reads a joint statement from Dix and Dr. Henry.

“There are many ways to make fun memories this fall. This weekend is a great opportunity to be outside, enjoying the fall foliage and Halloween decorations.”

According to Dr. Henry and Minister Dix, surveillance will be increased this weekend as authorities monitor for large gatherings.

“Now is not the time for parties or large gatherings in our homes. Instead, let’s spend time with others in a safe way, outside or in venues that have COVID-19 safety plans in place,” reads the joint statement.

Earlier this week, Dr. Henry announced new limitations for the number of people that could visit our homes, restricting gatherings to immediate household members and a “safe six.”

The BC Centre for Disease Control has also released a set of guidelines aimed at helping British Columbians stay safe this year on Halloween.

The BC CDC is advising British Columbians to try to incorporate a non-medical mask or face covering into costumes. With this in mind, officials are suggesting that costume masks should not be worn over non-medical masks or face coverings as that may make it difficult to breathe.

Health officials are asking for anyone trick-or-treating to stay in their own neighbourhoods this year and avoid busy areas or indoors (in places like malls).

It is also being recommended that homeowners find creative ways to hand out treats while keeping physical distance and limiting contact. For any homeowner feeling ill, the BC CDC asks them to turn off their porch lights and stay home.

“Let’s make this weekend a safe and fun experience by keeping our groups small and by practising our COVID-19 sense,” concludes the written statement.

More COVID-19 information

If there is a confirmed COVID-19 case in a school, public health contacts affected school community members directly. Regional health authorities also post school notifications on their websites, providing the date and type of notification (outbreak, cluster or exposure) for impacted schools.

The Island Health school site can be found here.

Island Health’s COVID-19 data breaks down North, Central and South Island case counts and lists the number of days since any new lab-diagnosed cases. You can find the data here along with any public exposures.

According to data collected by Johns Hopkins University and Medicine, the number of confirmed COVID-19 cases worldwide is more than 45.4 million. More than 1.18 million deaths have been recorded.

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Fraser Health outbreaks push active COVID-19 infections in B.C. to all-time high of 2390 – Alaska Highway News

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B.C. has never had more people actively battling COVID-19 infections, as new government data showed a total of 2,390 people suffering with the virus that has spurred a global pandemic. 

That’s 46 more people suffering with the illness than was the case yesterday and it comes as 272 people were newly identified as infected in the past 24 hours. With 10,420 tests conducted, the day’s positive-test rate was 2.6%.

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The hotspot for new infections remains the 1.8-million-resident Fraser Health region, which includes much of the eastern and southern Lower Mainland, including 20 communities, such as Burnaby, Coquitlam, Surrey, Delta, Langley, Abbotsford and Chilliwack, but not Richmond or Vancouver.

Only about two-thirds of the new cases are from Fraser Health today, however. That’s down from the average in the past week, which had seen about three-quarters of all new cases located in the Fraser Health region. 

Here is the breakdown of all 14,381 detected COVID-19 cases in B.C., by health region, with new cases identified overnight in brackets:
• 4,664 in Vancouver Coastal Health (76);
• 8,219 in Fraser Health (183);
• 256 in Island Health (no change);
• 741 in Interior Health (seven);
• 412 in Northern Health (six); and
• 89 people who reside outside Canada (no change).

The number of COVID-19 patients in hospital fell by six to 78, with 25 of those people having infections serious enough to be in intensive care units. 

The vast majority of those infected are self-isolating at home. Health officials are keeping tabs on a record 6,003 people because those individuals have come into contact with others who are known to be carrying the virus.

The vast majority of COVID-19 patients recover: 11,670, or more than 81%.

One new death was recorded overnight, pushing the provincial death toll from the disease to 263. That leaves 58 patients unaccounted for, and health officials have told BIV that it is likely that they left the province without alerting authorities.

“There has been one new community outbreak, at Suncor Firebag Oil Sands,” provincial health officer Bonnie Henry, and Health Minister Adrian Dix said in a joint statement. “There continue to be exposure events around the province.”

One hospital in Fraser Health, Surrey Memorial Hospital, has had an outbreak for weeks. That health authority earlier this week declared that the outbreak at Delta Hospital is over.

There are three new outbreaks at seniors’ homes and healthcare facilities:
• Hawthorne Seniors Care Community in Port Coquitlam;
• CareLife Fleetwood in Surrey; and 
• Queen’s Park Hospital: Unit 3C NMSK 2.

Three such outbreaks have been declared over: 
• Fort Langley Seniors Community in Fort Langley;
• Sunset Manor in Chilliwack;
• The Village in Langley.

Fraser Health yesterday declared that the outbreak at Good Samaritan Victoria Heights, in New Westminster, is over, and the province confirmed that news today.

Other seniors’ long-term care and assisted living facilities in B.C. that have active outbreaks, include:
• Gateway Assisted Living for Seniors in Surrey;
• Mayfair Terrace Retirement Residence in Port Coquitlam;
• Louis Breyer Home and Hospital in Vancouver;
• Revera Lakeview long-term care home in Vancouver;
• Evergreen Baptist Care Society in White Rock;
• Queens Park Care Centre in New Westminster;
• Three Links Care Centre in Vancouver;
• Royal Arch Masonic Home in Vancouver;
• Haro Park Centre long-term care facility in Vancouver;
• Banfield Pavilion 4 West in Vancouver;
• Peace Portal Seniors Village in Surrey;
• Rosemary Heights Seniors Village in Surrey;
• Zion Park Manor in Surrey;
• Laurel Place in Surrey;
• Amenida Seniors Community in Surrey;
• Baillie House in Maple Ridge;
• Fellburn Care Centre long-term care facility in Burnaby;
• St. Michael’s Centre long-term care facilityin Burnaby;
• Fair Haven Homes Burnaby Lodge in Burnaby; and
• Agassiz Seniors Community in Agassiz.

“As we all enjoy Halloween tomorrow, make it about the treats and not the tricks,” Henry and Dix said.

“Respect homes that are choosing not to participate this year and give everyone the space to stay safe, both indoors and outdoors.”

gkorstrom@biv.com

@GlenKorstrom

 

 

 

 

 

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British Columbia reports 272 new cases of COVID-19 – Vancouver Is Awesome

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VICTORIA — The B.C. government says it will increase surveillance this weekend as an order limiting the number of people who can visit a home is in effect because of COVID-19.

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry announced this week that gatherings are now limited to people in an immediate household, plus their so-called “safe six”‘ guests.

In a joint statement, Henry and Health Minister Adrian Dix are reminding people to make the Halloween weekend safe for everyone by maintaining safe physical distances from one another.

They say this is also not the time for large gatherings in homes as the number of cases of COVID-19 spikes.

The province reported another 272 cases of COVID-19 on Friday and one additional death, bringing the total number of people who have died to 263.

There are 2,390 active cases of COVID-19 in the province, and 6,003 people are under public health monitoring after being exposed to a known case.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Oct. 30, 2020.

The Canadian Press

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