B.C. won't be back to 'full normal life' until at least the summer, and another wave is possible: Henry
VANCOUVER -- It'll be a few months before things get back to "full normal life" in B.C., the province's provincial health officer said in her latest update on COVID-19.
Speaking to media Tuesday, Dr. Bonnie Henry said she expects physical distancing and other measures to be in place at least until the summer.
"This is something obviously we've been thinking a lot about," Henry said.
"The days that we started to implement the orders and the controls that we put in place, we started to think about what would it take to for us to go back a little bit, a lot, a little bit in some areas, more in others… What would it look like for us to try and get back to some of the activities that we have."
Realistically, she said, residents of B.C. will be in some form of having to monitor and prevent transmission of COVID-19 until there's a vaccine, or enough of the population is immune.
"A vaccine is something that we need to really, really push for," she said.
And, she said, the province should be ready for another round of cases in the fall.
"We are likely in our first wave right now," Henry told the media, saying officials are watching what's happening in Wuhan, China, as restrictions are being lifted.
"When we get through this wave, which will likely be in another few weeks … we need to start thinking about what does it look like again to understand if we're starting to see importations again," she said.
She said likely the system will revert to how it was six weeks ago, where officials are monitoring things, but there are fewer restrictions on the public.
In what has been B.C.'s deadliest day so far, Henry announced five more people had died since the update the day before.
She said the province's total death toll has risen to 24, and the number of confirmed cases has surpassed 1,000.
Henry also announced the province's first large community outbreak, at a residence for temporary foreign workers in West Kelowna.
The premier will give a public address to British Columbians at 6:15 p.m. This article will be updated at that time, and will include live video during the announcement.