Christmas, other holidays threatened by rising COVID-19 cases ahead of Halloween

Grant Boone
October 27, 2020

Two schools have been closed as a result of COVID-19 cases.

With a surge of COVID-19 cases over the weekend, B.C.'s top doctor announced new public health orders and safety recommendations.

There are 12 new cases of the virus in Northern Health for a total of 383 since the pandemic began.

Health officials say that there are now 2,325 active cases of COVID-19 in the province, including 77 people who are in hospital with the disease, 26 of whom require critical care.

"The immediate focus will be on the Fraser Health region", she said, because of the marked increase in cases related to social gatherings in private homes, such as weddings and funerals.

The provincial death toll from COVID-19 now sits at 259.

Three of the outbreaks are at Fraser Health facilities, while one is at a Vancouver Coastal Health home.

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There are now 21 active outbreaks in health care facilities, including 19 long-term care facilities.

"But this is something we need to do as a community", Henry urged. The community outbreak at the Fedex facility in Kelowna is over, while a fresh outbreak has appeared at the Surrey pretrial centre - which houses prisoners awaiting trial.

Household gatherings are now limited to immediate household members and six additional people, Dr. Bonnie Henry outlined during Monday's COVID-19 press briefing.

"This is going to be a challenge more for some people than others, but this is something we need to do together as a community so we can get through the coming respiratory season", Henry said Monday.

Henry also said her "expectation" now is that people wear face coverings in indoor public spaces, though it is not an order.

"We know the vast majority of homes can not safely accommodate large numbers of people", she said, noting the challenge the order will present for smaller households. One school is located in the Fraser Health region and the other is located in the Interior Health region. Check back for updates.

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