Although B.C. has not made masks mandatory in public indoor spaces, some business owners are requiring all customers to wear them before entering their store. (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)

B.C. ramps up COVID-19 testing as active cases near 800

A further 2,452 people are under active public health monitoring due to possible exposures

B.C. has recorded 68 new COVID-19 cases in the past 24 hours.

That brings the total number of active confirmed cases as of Wednesday afternoon (Aug. 19) in the province to 798, health officials confirmed.

A further 2,452 people are under active public health monitoring due to possible exposures to others who are infected with the novel coronavirus.

Of the 4,745 people who have tested positive since January, 3,749 people have fully recovered.

“Currently, 10 individuals are hospitalized with COVID-19, four of whom are in intensive care,” Health Minister Adrian Dix and B.C.’s deputy provincial health officer, Dr. Réka Gustafson, said in a joint statement. “The remaining people with COVID-19 are recovering at home in self-isolation.”

There have been no new COVID-related deaths, keeping the total fatalities to 198 people.

On Wednesday, two Lower Mainland health authorities announced the expansion of testing centres – increasing the number of hours open and increasing staff on site to assist with administering COVID-19 tests.

“Testing for COVID-19 is an important part of our provincial pandemic response,” Dix and Gustafson said.

“We continue to step up the capacity, in each health region and in our labs, to match our public health activities.”

Those who suspect they have developed symptoms – no matter how mild – are being urged to self isolate and contact HealthLink BC at 811 to arrange for an assessment and test.

“If public health has advised you to self-isolate because you have been exposed to COVID-19, please follow their advice,” the statement reads. “Even if you have no symptoms, a negative test does not mean you can shorten the period of self-isolation.”

READ MORE: B.C. teachers’ union calls for remote learning option, stronger mask mandate

ALSO READ: Doctors brace for viral overload between cold and flu season and COVID-19

“COVID-19 has meant doing things we have never done before. But let’s not forget this is not forever, only for now. Let’s continue to stay strong and push our curve down to where it belongs.”


@ashwadhwani
ashley.wadhwani@bpdigital.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Want to support local journalism? Make a donation here.

Coronavirus

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

The TNRD’s free household hazardous waste round-up in Cache Creek has been rescheduled to take place on Nov. 1. (Photo credit: YouTube)
Hazardous Waste Round-up in Cache Creek moved to Nov. 1

Free event postponed by one week due to inclement weather

COVID-19. (Image courtesy CDC)
Interior Health reports 18 COVID-19 cases, highest daily count since July

The total of COVID-19 cases in the region is now at 662

COVID-19. (Courtesy of CDC).
Interior Health reports 12 additional COVID-19 cases

The total number of cases in the region is now at 644

A section of the Trans-Canada Highway north of Lytton. The highway will be closed for eight hours starting at 10 p.m. on Oct. 22. (Photo credit: BC Back Country)
Highway 1 from Spuzzum to Cache Creek to be closed for eight hours starting Oct. 22

Ten-hour closure will allow work to be done on bridge at Spuzzum

(from l) Fraser-Nicola candidates Aaron Sumexheltza (BC NDP), Jonah Timms (BC Green Party), Mike Bhangu (Independent), Dennis Adamson (Independent), and Jackie Tegart (BC Liberals) physically distancing after the All Candidates Forum in Ashcroft on Oct. 15. (Photo credit: Barbara Roden)
Candidates face questions about health care, housing, and more

All five Fraser-Nicola candiates were at a forum in Ashcroft on Oct. 15

B.C. provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry gives a daily briefing on COVID-19 cases at an almost empty B.C. Legislature press theatre in Victoria, B.C., on March 25, 2020. (Don Craig/B.C. government)
B.C. sees 223 new COVID-19 cases, now 2,009 active

Two new care home outbreaks in Surrey, Burnaby

Canada’s Chief Public Health Officer Theresa Tam responds to a question during a news conference Friday October 23, 2020 in Ottawa. Canada’s top physician says she fears the number of COVID-19 hospitalizations and deaths may increase in the coming weeks as the second wave continues to drive the death toll toward 10,000. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Canada’s top doctor warns severe illness likely to rise, trailing spike in COVID-19 cases

Average daily deaths from virus reached 23 over the past seven days, up from six deaths six weeks ago

Chastity Davis-Alphonse took the time to vote on Oct. 21. B.C’s general Election Day is Saturday, Oct. 24. (Chastity Davis-Alphonse Facebook photo)
B.C. reconciliation advocate encourages Indigenous women to vote in provincial election

Through the power of voice and education Chastity Davis-Alphonse is hopeful for change

White Rock RCMP Staff Sgt. Kale Pauls has released a report on mental health and policing in the city. (File photos)
White Rock’s top cop wants to bill local health authority for lengthy mental-health calls

‘Suggestion’ included in nine-page review calling for ‘robust’ support for healthcare-led response

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

A Le Chateau retail store is shown in Montreal on Wednesday July 13, 2016. Le Chateau Inc. says it is seeking court protection from creditors under the Companies’ Creditors Arrangement Act to allow it to liquidate its assets and wind down its operations.THE CANADIAN PRESS/Ryan Remiorz
Clothing retailer Le Chateau plans to close its doors, files for CCAA protection

Le Chateau said it intends to remain fully operational as it liquidates its 123 stores

RCMP stock photo (Black Press)
Charges laid against Prince George man, 39, in drug trafficking probe

Tyler Aaron Gelowitz is scheduled to appear in court Nov. 18

Green party Leader Sonia Furstenau arrives to announce her party’s election platform in New Westminster, B.C., on October 14, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
B.C. Green party says it’s raised nearly $835,000 in 38 days

NDP Leader John Horgan is holding his final virtual campaign event

Most Read