Highest daily count for virus, plus first outbreak at a school

British Columbia health officials are reporting the highest-ever daily number of new COVID-19 infections, at 203, along with the first outbreak at a school.

In a statement Wednesday, provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry said there are now 1,766 active cases in B.C., including 70 people in hospital. Two more people have died from COVID-19, bringing the death toll to 256.

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No new confirmed cases were reported in the Island Health region, which had 11 active cases as of Wednesday.

An outbreak has been declared at the Sandy Cove French-language school in Kelowna, where three people have tested positive. There have been more than 200 COVID-19 exposure warnings issued for B.C. schools — including two on Vancouver Island — but this is the first outbreak. An outbreak outside a health facility is declared when at least two people test positive.

An additional 160 people have been told to self-isolate and monitor themselves for symptoms for two weeks, Henry said.

Cases have also been reported at five care facilities around Metro Vancouver, while outbreaks have been declared over at five other sites.

Fraser Health said outbreaks were confirmed at three long-term care homes and two assisted-living facilities from White Rock and New Westminster to Langley, Maple Ridge and Chilliwack. The health authority said staff members have tested positive at Evergreen Baptist Care Society, Good Samaritan Victoria Heights, Fort Langley Seniors Community and Sunset Manor, all operated privately, as well as Baillie House, which is operated by Fraser Health.

Enhanced control measures are in place, visits at the five locations are restricted and Fraser Health says staffing at each facility will be maintained to ensure resident care.

The outbreaks come as Fraser Health confirms all cases of COVID-19 have concluded at George Derby Centre in Burnaby, Langley Lodge in Langley, White Rock Seniors Village and two Surrey facilities, Chartwell Crescent Gardens and Harrison West at Elm Village.

B.C. has confirmed 12,057 cases of COVID-19 so far, including 244 in the Island Health region.

— Times Colonist, The Canadian Press, Vancouver Sun

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