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B.C. confirms 16 new cases of COVID-19, for total of 2,444

There have been two new deaths.
Dr. Bonnie Henry gives provincial update on COVID-19. Screengrab.

There are now 2,444 cases of the coronavirus (COVID-19) in B.C., after health officials announced 16 new cases Monday.

There were 8 new cases on Saturday and 8 Sunday. 

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry reports that there are 882 cases in Vancouver Coastal Health (VCH), 1,195 in Fraser Health, 126 on Vancouver Island, 181 in Interior Health and 60 in Northern Health.

There has been one new acute-care outbreak at the Abbotsford Regional Hospital. In total, 14 long-term care or assisted-living facilities and five acute-care units have active cases.There are no new community outbreaks to report. There are 326 residents that have been affected and 222 staff.

There have been two new deaths, for a total of 143 fatalities in the province. 

There are currently 47 people in acute care in hospital and 12 are in critical care. 

There are 335 active cases of COVID-19 in the province, and 1,966 people who tested positive have recovered.

Health Minister Adrian Dix and Dr. Bonnie Henry also sent out their condolences to the family, friends and colleagues of Capt. Jennifer Casey, a public affairs officer with the Canadian Forces, who died after a Snowbird plane crashed in a residential area of Kamloops, B.C. on Sunday. They also sent out their best wishes to Capt. Richard MacDougall, the pilot of the aircraft, who is being treated for his injuries that the Snowbirds say are not life-threatening. 

Beginning Tuesday, May 19, many businesses that had been closed due to the pandemic can "begin the process of safely reopening," said Henry. The public health officer's revised orders can be found on the province's website

On Saturday, Henry thanked British Columbians who have taken the time to fill out the province's 'Your story, our future,' survey, but noted that the government would like to hear from more seniors, as well as B.C. residents who live outside major urban centres. "Anybody who works with anybody who is marginalized or vulnerable, who may not have access to a computer or a telephone, please find ways to encourage and to assist these people, your clients, to take this survey as well," said Henry. "We want to make sure everybody's stories are heard."

As the province "cautiously" moves toward its second phase of reopening with a gradual easing of restrictions, Henry warned that "we have to move carefully, and we have to move thoughtfully.

Henry adds that spending time in B.C.'s provincial parks is a great way to stay close to home and get some fresh air. However, they are only open for day use, and we must, "put our safe social interaction ‘rules’ into action."

"On Friday, education and child care guidance was also released to allow schools to once again begin in-class learning on June 1 and prepare for a full return in September," she explained. “Our schools and daycares will look and feel different, but they will operate in the safest way possible for everyone – for staff, students and families."

“From the start of this pandemic, British Columbians have demonstrated incredible compassion and care for our health-care workers, seniors, Elders and our communities. The result has been the flattening of our curve.

"Let’s keep working through this together.”

- With files from Megan Lalonde.

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