B.C. tops 4,000 cases of COVID-19 after identifying another 131 infections
VANCOUVER -- British Columbia has topped 4,000 cases of COVID-19 after health officials identified another 131 infections over the weekend.
At her briefing on Monday, provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry said 50 cases were discovered between Friday and Saturday, followed by another 37 from Saturday to Sunday and 44 from Sunday to Monday.
Together, the new cases bring the total number of infections recorded in B.C. since the start of the pandemic to 4,065.
The substantial increases follow a number of new community exposure events announced in recent days, as well as the discovery of several illegal underground parties and raves in the region.
Henry said the latest cases were discovered quickly thanks to the "intense work" done by contact-tracing teams, but warned there's only so much public health teams can do to mitigate the spread caused by irresponsible behaviour.
"We need to do better collectively to stop these exposure events from happening," she said. "Parties and gatherings with young people, many of whom you don't know, even if there are fewer than 50 people, are a concern."
Only 72 people recovered from the virus over the same three reporting periods, leaving the province with 445 active cases as of Monday. That's the highest caseload B.C. has seen since early May, and the province now has more active cases per capita than Ontario.
Health teams are also responding to two new outbreaks in long-term care homes in the Fraser Valley. One is at the New Vista Care Centre and the other is at the George Derby Centre.
"This is a centre that is separate from but related to the Derby Manor outbreaks that we declared last week," Henry said.
There are now eight active outbreaks in the health care system.
Fortunately, no one in B.C. died from COVID-19 over the weekend, leaving the death toll at 195. As of Monday, there have been 10 reporting periods without a coronavirus death in the province.
Nine people remain in hospital, however, including three who are in intensive care or critical care units.
With several weeks of summer left, Henry reminded the public that people carrying COVID-19 – particularly younger people – can easily infect others even when they're feeling healthy.
As the province's caseload continues to grow, Henry suggested B.C. is reaching a critical point in its fight against the virus.
"We need to hold our line and bend our curve back down where it belongs," she said.