"Let's work together to protect our communities"

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Dr. Bonnie Henry, B.C.'s provincial health officer, and Adrian Dix, Minister of Health, have issued the following joint statement regarding updates on the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) response in British Columbia:

"Today, we are reporting 566 new cases of COVID-19, including two epi-linked cases, for a total of 38,718 cases in British Columbia.

"There are 9,315 active cases of COVID-19 in the province. There are 352 individuals currently hospitalized with COVID-19, 74 of whom are in intensive care. The remaining people are recovering at home in self-isolation.

"Since we last reported, we have had 136 new cases of COVID-19 in the Vancouver Coastal Health region, 297 new cases in the Fraser Health region, 11 in the Island Health region, 74 in the Interior Health region, 48 in the Northern Health region and no new cases of people who reside outside of Canada.

"There have been 16 new COVID-19 related deaths, for a total of 543 deaths in British Columbia. We offer our condolences to everyone who has lost their loved ones during the COVID-19 pandemic.

"We have had no new health-care facility or community outbreaks.

"While we have seen the start of encouraging trends in our COVID-19 curve, the number of new cases and people with serious illness requiring care in hospital remains high. This is why the public health orders and restrictions remain in place and why we must continue to stay local and keep to our households through the holiday season.

"Let's make the coming weeks our 'winter break' by breaking the chain of transmission in our province. We can still be festive and enjoy the season, but let's ensure it is only with our immediate household or, if you live on your own, with one or two close contacts.

"Take in the holiday lights in your neighbourhood, have a virtual visit with friends or support a 'drive in and drop off' charitable toy drive.

"Let's work together to protect our communities and those who are most vulnerable and make it a safe and enjoyable holiday season for everyone."