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COVID-19 outbreak at Kelowna resort, 335 new cases in B.C.

Last Updated Nov 7, 2020 at 11:45 am PDT

FILE - Health Minister Adrian Dix. (Courtesy B.C. Government, Flickr)

Another 335 people have become infected with COVID-19 since Tuesday

Health officials say the virus doesn’t recognize community boundaries or regional border

There is a community outbreak at a resort in West Kelowna

VANCOUVER (NEWS 1130) — B.C. health officials have declared a new community outbreak at a West Kelowna resort as the province reports 335 COVID-19 cases and one virus-related death.

La Casa Cottages in West Kelowna is currently experiencing an outbreak as exposure events around the province continue.

The outbreak at Tim Horton’s in Merritt has been declared over.

In a joint statement from the Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry and Minister of Health Adrian Dix say the risks are everywhere, and no community or person is immune.

“The virus doesn’t recognize community boundaries or regional borders,” they say.

“As we have seen before, a small cluster in one region can quickly become an outbreak in another. That is why province-wide orders are in place throughout B.C. and why we all need to use our layers of protection – all the time”

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New outbreaks have been reported at the Hawthorne Senior Care Community in Port Coquitlam and Village at Mill Creek.

Meanwhile, Fraser Health declared an outbreak over at Peace Portal Seniors Village, a long term care facility in Surrey that is owned and operated by Retirement Concepts.

And a staff member at White Rock Seniors Village has tested positive for the virus and a resident has tested positive at Hawthorne Seniors Care Community.

Cases across the province total 16,135 and Wednesday’s additional death brings COVID-19 related deaths to 273.

Fraser Health accounts for 205 cases Wednesday 

And according to the Fraser Health Authority chief medical health officer Dr. Elizabeth Brodkin, 205 cases reported in the region Wednesday have been linked to social gatherings and some workplaces.

Despite the reported cases in the region, Brodkin says there are no plans to shut anything down.

“We have no plans to close our schools. Transmission is less likely to take place in a school setting than in other settings and there are good COVID safety plans in place which have helped to keep the students and their families and the teachers safe,” she says.

But Brodkin admits she is concerned about the positivity rate for that region constantly hovering around six per cent.

There are now 38 cases linked to a superspreader outbreak at the Capella Dance Academy in Chilliwack which includes students at 13 local schools.

At this point, Brodkin says no COVID-19 transmissions have been within any of those schools.

“We have seen a very significant number of exposures in our schools, but those are only exposures and very few of them have gone on to result in transmission. The measures that are there are working and we will be keeping our schools open.”

There are 3,120 active cases, 7,133 people under active public health monitoring due to identified exposure to known cases, and 12,659 people who tested positive have recovered.

Health officials say 92 individuals are hospitalized, with 25 of them in intensive care. The remaining people with COVID-19 are recovering in self-isolation at home.

“When transmission increases in one area, we focus our public health efforts to contain further spread and ask everyone to step up their own efforts and preventive actions at the same time.

Henry and Dix once again ask British Columbians to take COVID-19 health protocols seriously, reminding people to wear masks, wash your hand frequently and keep groups small inside and outside homes.

“Doing these things together is what keeps our communities strong and keeps everyone safe. These actions are what ensures capacity within our health-care system, protect those who are most vulnerable and allows our well-being to continue.”