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B.C. confirms 83 new cases of coronavirus, for total of 186

There have also been three new deaths.
Doctor Bonnie Henry and Health Minister Adrian Dix. Screengrab

There are now 186 cases of the coronavirus (COVID-19) in B.C., after health officials announced 83 new cases Tuesday.  

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry reported 116 cases in the Vancouver Coastal Health (VCH) region, 47 in the Fraser Health region, 12 on Vancouver Island Health and seven in the Interior Health region and four in Northern Health. 

"Yesterday was a tough day," Henry said at the beginning of the conference.

There have also been three new deaths. Two are associated with the Lynn Valley Care Centre and the third is a man in his 80s in the Fraser Health Authority who passed away in hospital Monday.

Seven people are in hospital and four are in intensive care. 

Henry adds that the declaration of a public health emergency in the province enables officials to be faster and more streamlined.

"There has been a large increase. We've had a dramatic increase in the number of people being tested," she added. 

Bars and pubs will have to close, as Henry says they do not meet the requirement for physical distancing. However, grocery stores and pharamcies will remain open, as they provide daily necessities. 

Henry adds that people should consult the new online assesment tool if they aren't sure if they require further testing or assessment for COVID-19. She also underscored the importance of physical distancing, hand washing, covering your mouth if you cough, not touching your face and staying home if you are sick. 

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced Monday Canada would take "increasingly aggressive steps" to keep Canadians safe during the ongoing COVID-19 crisis. 

"We will be closing our borders to people who are not citizens or permanent residents of Canada," said Trudeau. Currently, the exceptions to this will be air crews, diplomats, immediate family members of Canadian citizens, and U.S. citizens.

More to come.. 

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