B.C. records biggest daily jump in new COVID-19 cases since April
VANCOUVER -- Health officials in British Columbia have recorded the biggest daily jump in new cases since April.
The latest update on COVID-19 in B.C. revealed another 53 cases were reported in the province in the last 24 hours.
Friday's update, given by news release from Dr. Bonnie Henry, said no more people have died of the virus since Thursday's update.
The death toll remains at 195.
Henry and Health Minister Adrian Dix say the update brings B.C.'s total caseload to 3,934 patients who've tested positive or are epidemiologically linked to test-positive cases since the start of the pandemic.
Of the cases reported Friday, three were epi-linked.
B.C. health officials have announced a total of 293 confirmed cases since last Friday afternoon alone.
"Like a wildfire, COVID-19 has the potential to rapidly burn out of control and we need to put out these flare-ups," Dix and Henry said in Friday's statement.
Henry said earlier this week many of the recent cases are in patients who were exposed in the last two weeks, and that the increase is not unexpected.
Several of the cases are tied to small gatherings, travel and workplace exposures, she said.
She added the days after the August long weekend may lead to future spikes, as people who attended B.C. Day gatherings may be unknowingly spreading the virus.
"In all of these cases, the common factors are really the same: it's about the things that we're doing when we're in close contact with people."
There are currently 386 active cases in B.C., the highest number since mid-May. Eleven of those are currently hospitalized, with four patients requiring intensive care.
The others are recovering at home, officials said.
"Today, more than 1,500 people throughout our province are self-isolating, unable to leave their home unless it is to get medical care, because they have COVID-19 or have had high-risk exposure to the virus," Dix and Henry said.
"In step with our increased interactions comes the need to ensure we are taking the steps to protect ourselves and those around us… Now is not the time to relax and let our down our guard."
Health officials say 3,353 are considered recovered.
Earlier in the day, a new health-care facility outbreak was announced in the Fraser Health region, bringing the total of outbreaks in long-term care, assisted living and acute care to six.
Of the cases confirmed in B.C., Fraser Health has seen the highest number.
As of Friday, 2,069 cases were known to be in the health authority's region. Another 1,167 cases have been reported in the area covered by Vancouver Coastal Health, and 147 are in the Island Health region.
There have been 389 in the Interior Health area, and 69 in Northern Health.