2 new ‘very concerning’ outbreaks of COVID-19 confirmed in B.C.’s health-care system

B.C. health officials say the detection of new outbreaks of COVID-19 in a long-term care home and a small hospital is “very concerning” and should serve as a warning that the disease hasn’t disappeared.

Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry and Health Minister Adrian Dix gave their daily update on B.C.’s numbers in a written statement on Wednesday, announcing 19 new confirmed cases but no new deaths.

They also announced new outbreaks at the Mission Memorial Hospital and Tabor Home, a long-term care facility in Abbotsford. 

“These recent health-care outbreaks are very concerning and clearly demonstrate that COVID-19 remains in our communities,” Henry and Dix said in Wednesday’s statement.

“Mission Memorial is a small hospital, which means services for the local community are now limited to urgent and emergency care only.”

They said the outbreak at Tabor Home and another one announced Tuesday at Maple Hill long-term care facility in Langley have both been linked to the hospital outbreak.

Wednesday’s numbers bring the total number of cases confirmed so far in B.C. to 2,775. Of those, 168 people have died, 185 infections are still active and 2,422 people have recovered.

Eleven patients remain in hospital, including five in intensive care.

Earlier Tuesday, Fraser Health confirmed that one resident has tested positive for COVID-19 at Tabor Home and a public health SWAT team is on scene.

Meanwhile, the outbreak at the Oppenheimer Group produce distributor has been declared over.  

Warning about summer travel

With just a few days to go before summer officially begins, Henry and Dix cautioned members of the public to be mindful of the impact that vacation travel might have on smaller communities in B.C.

“We ask British Columbians to continue to take all measures to ensure you are safely increasing your social interactions, you are being respectful of communities you may be visiting when on the road and that you are always, without question, staying home and staying away from others if you are even mildly ill,” they said.

“Closed spaces, close contact and crowds are higher risk, so anything that involves these things needs to be done with caution.”

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