A COVID-19 outbreak at Vernon's Heritage Square long-term care home. (Jennifer Smith - Morning Star)

Interior Health reports second-highest number of COVID-19 cases over weekend in B.C.

1,345 new cases, more than Vancouver Coastal Health Authority

Provincewide, Interior Health had some of the most new cases of COVID-19 this past weekend.

The region had 1,345 new cases, second to Fraser Health’s 1,884. Vancouver Coastal had 1,155, Island Health reported 681 and Norther Health had 556.

There were 22 new deaths in the last 72 hours. Four of those were in IH, nine Fraser Health, six in the Vancouver region and three on Vancouver Island.

There has also been eight new health-care facility outbreaks, with the latest IH outbreak at Vernon’s Heritage Square.

Other long-term care outbreaks in the region include the Hamlets in Vernon, Mount Cartier Court, Sun Pointe Village, Lakeview Lodge and Brocklehurst Gemstone.

Public Health Orders have also been extended B.C.-wide, with restrictions on gyms, restaurants, events and gatherings continuing.

These orders were scheduled to end at the end of Tuesday, Jan. 18. But updated orders now show there is no expiration date.

READ MORE: Restrictions on B.C. gyms, food and liquor services extended; details expected Tuesday

Teachers and those working in schools are also now required to provide their vaccination status.

The order, dated Monday, was uploaded to the provincial government’s website quietly without any formal announcement.

“An employer must request proof of vaccination from each staff member and must keep a record of each staff member’s vaccination status,” the order stated.

READ MORE: B.C. school staff must provide COVID-19 vaccine status following new public health order


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