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B.C. confirms 24 new cases of COVID-19, for total of 2,597

There has been one new death.
Dr. Bonnie Henry gives provincial update. Photo: Screengrab.

There are now 2,597 cases of the coronavirus (COVID-19) in B.C., after health officials announced 24 new cases Monday.

Provincial health officer, Dr. Bonnie Henry reports that there are 904 cases in Vancouver Coastal Health (VCH), 1,307 in Fraser Health, 127 on Vancouver Island, 195 in Interior Health and 64 in Northern Health

There have been no new outbreaks in long-term care facilities and an outbreak has been declared over at Clayton-Heights. In total, 12 long-term care or assisted-living facilities and one acute-care unit have active outbreaks. 

Public health teams continue to provide support for community outbreaks at federal corrections facilities, the processing facilities in the poultry sector and for individuals connected to the Kearl Lake plant in Alberta.

The outbreak at the Mission correctional facility outbreak has been declared over. 

There has been one new death. 

There are currently 32 people in acute care in hospital and five are in intensive care.

There are 224 active cases of COVID-19 in the province, and 2,207 people who tested positive have recovered.

Earlier this month, the province allowed many businesses that had been closed due to the pandemic to begin the process of "safely reopening." The public health officer's revised orders can be found on the province's website

With B.C. now two weeks into phase two of its restart plan, reopened for in-class learning today, until the end of the school year.

"I know this is very exciting, and I know for some people they are thinking about this with trepidation, and that is fine," Henry said on Saturday. "We are ready for this, and we are reopening schools because we believe it is safe to do so." 

But as parents begin returning to work and planning for the summer, sending children to overnight summer camps once the school year comes to an end will not be an option. On Saturday, Henry announced a new provincial health officer order she has implemented restricting the operation of overnight sleepaway camps for children and youth. 

"Such camps often have large numbers of children coming from many different areas - campers and counsellors -  and they often take place in more remote areas," Henry explained. "Physical distancing is very much a challenge in these situations. I know that this is a disappointment for many groups who are used to having that important part of their summer, but I would encourage everybody to focus on arranging day camps where staying outside in smaller groups is far easier to do, and will be safe." 

She continued, "I'll remind people that this is not forever, but it is this summer, that we're in a very unusual situation around the world. Globally, we're having to do things differently this year."

“Our individual circumstances are unique, but the actions we can take to protect each other and ourselves are the same. We have made great strides to flatten our curve and we must continue to work together to keep it there.”

Live conference more to come... 

- With files from Megan Lalonde.