Possible COVID-19 exposure at dental conference in Vancouver, health officials warn
VANCOUVER -- March 24 update: A dentist who attended the conference has died.
A dental conference in Vancouver may have been the site of COVID-19 exposure earlier this month, local health authorities are warning.
Vancouver Coastal Health said Thursday that a person who attended the Pacific Dental Conference on March 6 recently tested positive for COVID-19.
The person is now recovering at home, VCH says, and there is no ongoing risk to the community or the Vancouver Convention Centre, where the conference was held. The person was at the conference between 2 and 4 p.m. on March 6.
"As a precaution only, we are advising participants who attended the Pacific Dental Conference during those hours to monitor themselves for the following symptoms for up to 14 days and call HealthLink BC at 811 for advice if they develop them," a statement from VCH says.
"As long as participants of the conference remain healthy and do not develop symptoms, there is no need to self-isolate and they should continue with their usual daily activities."
The Vancouver Convention Centre reiterated that the risk to participants and staff is "extremely low."
In the wake of the event, the convention centre said it has "amplified" its sanitizing process and scheduled additional cleaning staff during event days. Additional hand sanitizing stations have also been placed throughout the building.
"The health and safety of our guests and staff remains our highest priority, and we have been assured by public health officials that our enhanced cleaning and sanitization procedures are appropriate for our ongoing operations and events," a statement from the convention centre says.