VANCOUVER -- B.C. health officials announced another 250 cases of COVID-19 and three related deaths Wednesday.

It's the lowest number of new cases the province has added in a single day since Oct. 29, when the province reported 234 cases.

With the latest cases added, B.C.'s rolling seven-day average for new cases drops to 327.

Wednesday's update, which came in the form of a written statement from public health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry and Health Minister Adrian Dix, brings B.C.'s active caseload to 3,580.

Of that total, 296 people are battling the coronavirus in hospital, including 97 who are in intensive care units.

Case counts and hospitalizations, which have been declining since the peak of B.C.'s third wave in April, are key metrics for the province's four-step restart plan, the details of which health officials unveiled Tuesday.

The other key indicator the province will use to determine when to move to the next step of the plan is vaccination rates. As of Wednesday, B.C. has administered a total of 2,979,951 doses of COVID-19 vaccines, the vast majority of them first doses.

“B.C.'s restart plan provides a clear path for our future; one that will allow us to move forward and safely resume activities that have been on hold, without compromising the progress we have made in reducing COVID-19 community transmission," Henry and Dix said in their statement. “We are now in step one of the plan and are closely monitoring our progress to ensure we stay on track.

The restart plan allows for the return of indoor dining in restaurants and private, indoor gatherings involving up to five guests. Organized outdoor gatherings – such as weddings – are also now allowed, with a capacity of up to 50 people, provided that guests are seated and there's a safety plan in place.

What's not allowed, however, is non-essential travel between B.C.'s three broad health "zones": the Lower Mainland, the Interior and north, and Vancouver Island.

Provincial travel restrictions are scheduled to end when B.C. moves to step two of the restart plan.

The Lower Mainland remains the focal point of the pandemic in B.C., with the majority of Wednesday's cases found in the Vancouver Coastal Health and Fraser Health regions.

Eighty-four of Wednesday's cases were found in Vancouver Coastal Health, and 109 were found in Fraser Health. Elsewhere in the province, there were nine new cases in Island Health, 40 in Interior Health and eight in Northern Health. 

Since the pandemic began, B.C. has seen 142,886 confirmed cases of COVID-19 and 1,683 deaths from the disease. A total of 137,517 people who tested positive for the coronavirus in B.C. are now considered recovered.