And the COVID-19 hits just keep coming for Kelowna.
Interior Health has found that further testing of individuals has allowed identified an additional location in Kelowna where individuals may have been exposed to COVID-19.
Interior Health said Friday that individuals who visited Fossello’s clothing store, 565 Bernard Avenue, on July 18 or on the morning of July 20 (10 a.m. – 12 p.m.) are asked to self-monitor themselves closely for symptoms of COVID-19 and to get tested if they begin to exhibit symptoms.
Public health contact tracing is under way, and where possible, IH is reaching out directly to individuals who have been exposed. Individuals seeking a test should call their primary care provider (family physician or nurse practitioner) or the closest Interior Health community testing and assessment centre.
The Fossello’s clothing store is just the latest incident in a string of IH alerts for the Kelowna area in the past days as the region deals with a surge in COVID-19 cases.
Interior Health said a total of 86 cases (80 Confirmed, 6 Epi-linked) are now linked to the current cluster of cases in Kelowna with 74 of those are Interior Health residents. The other 12 are from Vancouver Coastal (5) and Fraser Health (7).
Interior Health said they have identified an additional epi-linked COVID-19 case in a health care worker at Kelowna General Hospital.
"This brings the number of KGH employee cases to eight. This is another community-acquired case, linked to the broader cluster in Kelowna," IH said.
"This was not an exposure in hospital and we have no evidence of any patient exposures related to these staff cases. Investigations and follow-up on this and additional cases related to the cluster continue."
As per IH protocols and Ministry of Health recommendations, staff experiencing symptoms must stay home from work.
"We are confident that the individuals impacted by this current situation are following this direction," IH said. "It is important that anyone requiring medical care at the hospital feels confident in coming to KGH."
Testing is recommended for anyone experiencing symptoms of COVID-19, including:
- ·Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
- ·Loss of sense of taste or smell
- ·Other milder symptoms may include: runny nose, fatigue, body aches (muscles and joints aching), diarrhea, headache, sore throat, vomiting and red eyes.
IH reminds everyone of the importance of following COVID-19 precautions:
- ·Stay home and avoid travel if you have symptoms, even mild ones.
- ·Maintain physical distancing (two metres apart) and use masks when distancing is not possible.
- ·Wash your hands regularly and do not touch your face.
- ·Do not plan or attend gatherings of more than 50 people.
In BC, Adrian Dix, Minister of Health, and Dr. Bonnie Henry, B.C.'s provincial health officer, reported 27 new cases Friday, including one epi-linked case, for a total of 3,419 cases in British Columbia.
The Ministry of Health said there are 294 active cases of COVID-19 in the province and 2,934 people who tested positive have recovered.
"Of the total COVID-19 cases, 12 individuals are hospitalized, three of whom are in intensive care," the Ministry said. "The remaining people with COVID-19 are recovering at home in self-isolation.
"Since the start of the pandemic, there have been 1,057 cases of COVID-19 in the Vancouver Coastal Health region, 1,764 in the Fraser Health region, 142 in the Island Health region, 319 in the Interior Health region, 79 in the Northern Health region and 58 cases of people who reside outside of Canada.
"There has been one new COVID-19 related death, for a total of 191 deaths in British Columbia.
Limit gatherings to out of doors whenever possible. Information on public exposures to COVID-19 within the Interior Health region are available here: https://news.interiorhealth.ca/news/public-exposures/
Answers to frequently asked questions are available on the British Columbia Centre for Disease Control website, available here: http://www.bccdc.ca/health-info/diseases-conditions/covid-19/common-questions