Adrian Dix, Minister of Health, and Dr. Bonnie Henry, B.C.'s provincial health officer, have issued the following joint statement regarding updates on the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) response in British Columbia:
"We are announcing 48 new cases of COVID-19, for a total of 472 cases in British Columbia, since we last reported on Saturday, March 21, 2020.
"It is with sadness we share that three more patients have passed away after testing positive for COVID-19: one at the Lynn Valley Care Centre, one at the Haro Park Centre and one a resident of Fraser Health who was receiving treatment at home. That brings us to a total of 13 people who have died after testing positive for COVID-19. We extend our condolences to their loved ones.
"Of the new cases, one patient is a health-care worker at the German-Canadian Care Home in Vancouver Coastal Health and one is a health-care worker at the Delta View Care Centre in Fraser Health.
"Every health region in British Columbia has patients with COVID-19: 248 are in Vancouver Coastal Health, 150 are in Fraser Health, 39 are in Island Health, 30 are in Interior Health and five are in Northern Heath.
"Additionally, of the total COVID-19 cases, 33 individuals are currently hospitalized and 14 of them are in intensive care. We are pleased to report that 100 patients have recovered, and the remaining people who have tested positive for COVID-19 are recovering at home in self-isolation.
"The significant increase in confirmed recoveries is a result of many people who have been recovering in self isolation, with mild symptoms, meeting newly established criteria for recovery.
"Our testing capacity has increased to about 3,000 tests per day, and that capacity will continue to increase this week.
"The number of 811 calls we are able to answer has increased to more than 4,000 calls per day, as a result of adding 12 more nurses and 42 more navigators to our call centres.
"Over the last week, several new physical distancing measures have been put in place around the province, in health regions and individual communities.
"The gravity of the situation cannot be overstated, and everyone must do all they can to support our efforts break the chain of transmission and flatten the outbreak curve.
"Our health-care workers are at the heart of our pandemic response and they face the added risks of exposure both in the community and at work.
"Enhanced screening is in place for health-care workers, as well as clear guidance for appropriate use of personal protective equipment. As individuals, health-care workers must also have a heightened awareness of symptoms and maintain physical distance from others, as much as possible.
"The Province of B.C. continues to put new tools in place to support British Columbians during this challenging time. In addition to the self-assessment tool on the BC Centre for Disease Control website, residents can now download a self-assessment app for their phones."
For recommendations on protecting yourself and your community from COVID-19, and to use an online self-assessment tool, visit: http://www.bccdc.ca/
The self-assessment app can be downloaded here: https://bc.thrive.health/
For non-health questions about COVID-19 call 1-888-COVID-19 or visit: www.gov.bc.ca/covid19
For the latest videos and livestreaming of COVID-19 media availabilities, visit: https://www.facebook.com/BCProvincialGovernment/
To view tables of epidemic curve and age distribution, visit: https://news.gov.bc.ca/files/Epidemic_Curve_Age_Distribution_March_20_2020.pdf