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

Mother bear and two cubs spotted in Crown Isle neighbourhood in Courtenay

Reduce the risk of an interaction by removing potential food sources

Mount Washington to open Dec. 4 with COVID-19 protocols in place

Reservations for some services, face coverings will be required

‘Bad blood’ over pathology issue, says Island Health medical director

Regional hospital district board pushes for pathology service in Courtenay, Campbell River

New Cumberland fire hall goes to rezoning hearing

Official community plan is also to be amended for the site

Suspect robs store, stabs clerk in Courtenay

Comox Valley RCMP are looking for suspect in Ryan Road incident

QUIZ: A celebration of apples

September is the start of the apple harvest

Young B.C. cancer survivor rides 105-km with Terry Fox’s brother

Jacob Bredenhof and Darrell Fox’s cycling trek raises almost $90,000 for cancer research

Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

B.C. migrant, undocumented workers rally for permanent residency program

Rally is part of the Amnesty for Undocumented Workers Campaign led by the Migrant Workers Centre

Preparations underway for pandemic election in Saskatchewan and maybe B.C.

Administrators in B.C. and around the country are also looking to expand voting by mail during the pandemic

Nearly 20 per cent of COVID-19 infections among health-care workers by late July

WHO acknowledged the possibility that COVID-19 might be spread in the air under certain conditions

Ferry riders say lower fares are what’s most needed to improve service

Provincial government announces findings of public engagement process

Comox Valley Beefs & Bouquets, week of Sept. 15

Beef to the gnome thief; bouquet to dental hygienists

Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg dies at 87

The court’s second female justice, died Friday at her home in Washington

Most Read