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Coronavirus: An additional 716 COVID-19 cases recorded in B.C., Northern Health adds 42

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British Columbia’s COVID-19 curve continues to bend in the wrong direction.

In a written update this afternoon (March 24), Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry said 716 more tests came back positive for the virus across B.C. during the past 24 hours for a new grand total of 93,969.

Of those infections, Northern Health added 42 for an updated authority total of 5,641 since March 2020.

There have been three more COVID-linked deaths, raising the province’s toll to 1,441.

There are currently 5,573 active cases throughout B.C. with 303 people in hospital, 85 of which are admitted in ICU or critical care. Another 9,696 are under active public health monitoring due to being exposed to someone diagnosed with the virus.

A total of 86,857 cases are officially classified as recovered.

B.C. officials also said there have been 71 newly-confirmed cases that are variants of concern. The total is now at 1,581 with 148 currently active.

There are 1,397 linked to the U.K. variant (B.1.1.7), 44 linked to the South African variant (B.1.351) and 140 of the Brazil variant (P.1).

In the north, two Prince George schools are being alerted once again for potential exposure to COVID-19 before its community began spring break.

Northern Health has listed Spruceland Traditional Elementary as students and staff may have come into contact with someone who recently tested positive for the virus on either March 12 or from 15 to 19.

Today (March 24) marks the third time the School District 57 (SD57) member has been flagged for COVID-19.

The other two instances occurred in February on 8 and 9, and 10 to 12.

Spruceland is also the fourth local school alerted for the virus since Monday (March 22), joining this week alongside Heather Park Elementary, College Heights Secondary and D.P. Todd Secondary.

Heather Park Elementary is also being notified of another additional exposure event.

Northern Health had issued an alert for Heather Park Elementary this past Monday (March 22) for March 11-12, 2021. The authority has since added March 10 as an additional date.

  • Contact tracing is initiated to determine how the individual was infected and who they were in close contact with
  • We identify and notify close contacts who may be at an increased risk, and advise them to self-isolate and monitor for symptoms for 14 days
  • Only Public Health can determine who is a close contact

    • Learning groups, friends or other connections may not be determined to be a close contact

  • Public Health staff works closely with the school and school district throughout the case and contact management process to maintain close communication with the school community

Throughout the course of the pandemic thus far, 25 Prince George-based schools have been warned for at least one COVID-19 exposure event, which includes 22 SD57 facilities and three private institutions.

An up-to-date list of northern B.C. schools marked for a COVID-19 exposure event in the month of March, and listed with a self-monitoring period, is as follows:

  • Moberly Lake Elementary (SD59) – March 8-12, 2021

    • Self-monitoring period ends March 26, 2021

  • Conrad Elementary School (SD52) – March 11-12, 2021

    • Self-monitoring period ends March 26, 2021

  • St. Joseph’s School (Independent) – March 1-5, 8, 2021

    • Self-monitoring period ends March 25, 2021

  • Spruceland Traditional Elementary (SD57) – March 12, 15-19, 2021

    • Self-monitoring period ends April 2, 2021

  • St. Joseph’s School – Smithers (Independent) – March 1-5, 8-11, 2021

    • Self-monitoring period ends March 25, 2021

  • Valemount Secondary (SD57) – March 12, 2021

    • Self-monitoring period ends March 26, 2021

  • Conrad Elementary School (SD82) – March 8-9, 11, 2021

    • Self-monitoring period ends March 25, 2021

  • DP Todd Secondary (SD57) – March 12, 2021

    • Self-monitoring period ends March 26, 2021

  • Chief Matthews School (Independent) – March 11-12, 2021

    • Self-monitoring period ends March 26, 2021

  • Notre Dame School (SD59) – March 8-9, 2021

    • Self-monitoring period ends March 24, 2021

  • College Heights Secondary (SD57) – March 15-17, 2021

    • Self-monitoring period ends March 31, 2021

  • Heather Park Elementary (SD57) – March 10, 11-12, 2021

    • Self-monitoring period ends March 26, 2021

  • Notre Dame School (SD59) – March 8-9, 2021

    • Self-monitoring period ends March 23, 2021

  • Ecole Roosevelt Park Community School (SD52) – March 10-12, 2021

    • Self-monitoring period ends March 26, 2021

  • Lax Kxeen Elementary (SD52) – March 10-12, 2021

    • Self-monitoring period ends March 26, 2021

  • Pacific Coast School (SD52) – March 10-12, 2021

    • Self-monitoring ends March 26, 2021

  • Caledonia Secondary (SD82) – March 5, 8-12, 2021

    • Self-monitoring period ends March 26, 2021

  • Kildala Elementary (SD82) – March 12, 2021

    • Self-monitoring period ends March 26, 2021

  • Cassie Hall Elementary (SD82) – March 10-12, 2021

    • Self-monitoring periods ends March 26, 2021

  • William Konkin Elementary (SD91) – March 10-12, 2021

    • Self-monitoring period ends March 26, 2021

  • Mount Elizabeth Secondary (SD82) – March 10-12, 2021

    • Self-monitoring period ends March 26, 2021

  • Hazelton Secondary (SD82) – March 11, 2021

    • Self-monitoring period ends March 25, 2021

  • Ecole Roosevelt Park Community School (SD52) – March 9-11, 2021

    • Sel-monitoring period ends March 25, 2021

  • Charles Hays Secondary – March 8, 2021

    • Self-monitoring period ends March 22, 2021

  • Charles Hays Secondary (SD52) – March 10-12, 2021

    • Self-monitoring period ends March 26, 2021

  • Kildala Elementary (SD82) – March 11, 2021

    • Self-monitoring period ends March 25, 2021

  • Chief Matthews School (Independent) – March 8, 2021

    • Self-monitoring period ends March 22, 2021

  • Valemount Elementary (SD57) – March 8-9, 2021

    • Self-monitoring period ends March 23, 2021

  • College Heights Secondary (SD57) – March 8-9, 2021

    • Self-monitoring period ends March 22, 2021

  • Caledonia Secondary (SD82) – March 8-9, 2021

    • Self-monitoring period ends March 23, 2021

  • Lax Kxeen Elementary (SD52) – March 8, 2021

    • Self-monitoring period ends March 22, 2021

  • Prince Rupert Middle (SD52) – March 8-10, 2021

    • Self-monitoring period ends March 24, 2021

  • Conrad Elementary (SD52) – March 8-9, 2021

    • Self-monitoring period ends March 22, 2021

  • Skeena Middle (SD82) – March 1-5, 8, 2021

    • Self-monitoring periods ends March 22, 2021

  • Dawson Creek Secondary – South Peace campus (SD59) – March 5, 2021

    • Self-monitoring period ends March 19, 2021

  • Kildala Elementary (SD82) – March 8, 2021

    • Self-monitoring period ends March 22, 2021

– with files from Kyle Balzer, PrinceGeorgeMatters