A mannequin is used to block off a seat at Roundel Cafe to help diners adhere to physical distancing guidelines, as owner Dena Sananin removes an item from the menu board during brunch service in Vancouver, on Sunday, June 14, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck

B.C. records 14 new cases, one death as province eyes Phase Three in restart plan

Fourteen people are in hospital, seven of whom are in intensive care

B.C. has recorded 14 new COVID-19 cases and another death – announced just a few hours after provincial leaders announced new details on Phase Three in their restart plan.

That brings the total number of test-positive cases since January to 2,516, with 162 of those still active, according to a Wednesday (June 24) joint statement from provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry and Health Minister Adrian Dix.

Fourteen people are in hospital, seven of whom are in intensive care.

“There has been one new COVID-19 related death in the Vancouver Coastal Health region, for a total of 171 deaths in British Columbia,” the statement reads.

“We offer our condolences to everyone who has lost their loved ones during the COVID-19 pandemic.”

Earlier Wednesday, Premier John Horgan announced that B.C. would soon be entering Phase Three in the NDP government’s restart plan. This means movie theatres, resorts and hotels and other businesses will be allowed to reopen.

Henry and Dix urged British Columbians to look to Phase Three – which includes an ease on previously restricted in-province travel – with caution and safety top of mind.

“We have worked hard to find the balance in British Columbia: to flatten our curve, keep new cases low and safely increase our social interactions by continuing to follow our core, foundational rules.

“We are in a unique and unusual time, and until we have an effective treatment or vaccine, COVID-19 will continue to circulate in our communities. We need to keep our actions going to minimize any cases.”

More details on Phase Three are expected in the days to come.

In the meantime, British Columbians are being urged to do their research before they go anywhere, specifically if the community is welcoming visitors and what services or resources are open or closed.

Some First Nations have said they plan to keep visitors restrictions in place for the next several weeks. Henry has warned travellers to be cautious when visiting rural or remote areas, which are more vulnerable to seeing adverse impacts amid a COVID-19 cluster or outbreak.

More to come.


@ashwadhwani
ashley.wadhwani@bpdigital.ca

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