B.C. health officials to share update on COVID-19 on Monday

Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry confirms a second case of coronavirus in B.C., during a press conference in Vancouver, Tuesday, February 4, 2020.

Jason Payne / PNG

B.C. health minister and provincial health officer are set to share an update on the coronavirus on Monday morning.

Health Minister Adrian Dix and provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry will speak in a teleconference at 9 a.m. We will share updates as they happen.

In an announcement Thursday, Dix and Henry said B.C. now had its sixth case of coronavirus, now known as COVID-19, after returning from a week in Iran. The woman lives in the Fraser Health region.

Henry had said staff were surprised by a new case linked to Iran, which only recently reported it had five cases of COVID-19 and two deaths.

“That could be an indicator that there’s more widespread transmission. This is what we call an indicator or sentinel event,” Henry said during the Thursday news conference.

The first of B.C.’s six cases was a Vancouver Coastal Health-area resident who had travelled to China. He has since fully covered.

The second, third and fourth cases were a Vancouver-area woman and her two relatives, who were visiting from China. Those three individuals remain in isolation at home and in recovery.

The fifth case is a woman in her 30s who had recently returned from Shanghai, China, and who remained in isolation at home in B.C.’s Interior.

Three cases of the virus have also been confirmed in Ontario.

As of Feb. 23, the World Health Organization said there were 78,811 confirmed cases globally, with 1,017 new cases within the 24 hours prior to the report being published. The majority of those cases remain in China, where the epicentre of the outbreak is located. There are 77,042 confirmed cases and 2,445 deaths in China to date.

Outside of China, there have been 17 deaths. In Canada, there have only been nine cases to date, with only one case being transmitted outside of China. There have been no deaths due to COVID-19 in Canada.

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