COVID-19 in B.C.: 14 new exposures in Metro Vancouver schools, workplace and wedding outbreaks, and more

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      One day after B.C. provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry warned new restrictions could be coming due increased cases from weddings and workplaces, regional health authorities issued notifications about public exposure incidents or outbreaks related to both of those situations.

      Meanwhile, new case numbers remain above the 200-case mark, active and monitored cases are still increasing, there are two new healthcare outbreaks, and new exposure events at 14 schools in the Lower Mainland.

      Daily update: October 23

      While today’s count is lower than yesterday’s record high of 274 new cases, it is higher than the previous record of 203 new cases set a day before on October 21.

      Henry and B.C. Deputy Health Minister Stephen Brown announced in a joint statement that there are 223 new cases (including five epi-linked cases) today.

      For yet another consecutive day, active cases rose, this time up 89 cases to 2,009 active cases.

      Hospitalized cases increased by four people to 75 patients, with 24 of those patients (the same number as yesterday) in intensive care units.

      The number of people public health is monitoring continues to grow—an increase of 212 people from yesterday to 4,637 people today.

      Unfortunately, Fraser Health declared outbreaks at two healthcare facilities after individual staff members tested positive at these locations:

      • Laurel Place (9688 137a Street) in Surrey;

      • Fair Haven Homes Burnaby Lodge (7557 Sussex Avenue) in Burnaby.

      The good news is that Fraser Health has declared outbreaks at the following facilities as over:

      • PICS Assisted Living;

      • Good Samaritan Delta View Care Centre;

      • Chartwell Carrington House Retirement Residence;

      • Thornebridge Gardens Retirement Residence.

      Active outbreaks remain in 18 healthcare facilities—16 longterm care or assisted-living facilities and two acute-care facilities.

      At yesterday’s briefing, Henry had warned that there has been a noticeable increase in the number of cases linked to workplaces. Today, Fraser Health announced that there are two new community outbreaks at two facilities (both of which have been ordered closed):

      • Coast Spas Manufacturing (6315 202nd Street) in Langley, where 12 employees have tested positive;

      • Pace Processing, a food processing facility (19495 55th Avenue) in Surrey, where 10 employees tested positive.

      Thankfully, no new deaths were announced. The total number of deaths remain at 256 people who have died during the pandemic.

      A total of 10,247 people have now recovered.

      A cumulative total of 12,554 cases have been confirmed in B.C. during the pandemic, including:

      • 6,864 cases in Fraser Health;

      • 4,319 in Vancouver Coastal Health;

      • 662 in Interior Health;

      • 371 in Northern Health;

      • 250 in the Island Health;

      • 88 people from outside Canada.

      Saint St. Grill 

      Public exposures

      At yesterday’s briefing, Henry also raised concerns about a heightened number of cases linked to social gatherings such as weddings, celebrations, and funerals.

      Today, Fraser Health added an exposure event that took place at wedding events held at Lake Errock and Saint St. Grill (2514 St Johns Street) in Port Moody from 5 a.m. to 11 p.m. on October 10. In a statement on social media, the restaurant stated that they were informed that three people had tested positive. 

      Loblaw announced that two of its stores had employees who tested positive:

      • Real Canadian Superstore (19800 Lougheed Highway) in Pitt Meadows—the employee last worked there on October 19;
      • Shoppers Drug Mart (2121 Trans-Canada Highway) in Kamloops—the employee last worked there on October 18.

      The B.C. Centre for Disease Control added only one flight confirmed with COVID-19 to its list today: Air Canada flight 8187 from Vancouver to Fort St. John on October 15.

      If you were in rows 2 to 6 on this flight, you should monitor yourself for symptoms for 14 days. If you develop symptoms, immediately self-isolate and call 811 (if in B.C.) or your local healthcare provider for testing information.

      Point Grey Secondary
      Point Grey Secondary

      School exposures

      Vancouver Coastal Health added new exposure events at six schools to its list.

      In Vancouver, new exposures took place at three schools:

      • Point Grey Secondary School (5350 East Boulevard) had an exposure on October 16;
      • Ideal Mini School (855 West 59th Avenue) also on October 16;
      • Sir James Douglas Elementary School (2150 Brigadoon Avenue) on October 20.

      In North Vancouver, Handsworth Secondary School (1044 Edgewood Road), which previously had exposures from October 13 to 14, added October 20 as an exposure date.

      In Richmond, two schools had new exposures:

      • H.J. Cambie Secondary School (4151 Jacombs Road) had exposures from October 13 to 16, and on October 19;
      • Pythagoras Academy (8671 Odlin Crescent) from October 13 to 14.

      Meanwhile, Fraser Health had new exposure incidents at eight schools.

      In Coquitlam, Centennial Secondary (570 Poirier Street) had exposures from October 15 to 16.

      In Langley, Belmont Elementary (20390 40th Avenue) had an exposure event from October 13 to 15.

      Princess Margaret Secondary
      Princess Margaret Secondary

      In Surrey, there were new exposure events at six schools that all have had previous exposure events:

      • Khalsa Secondary—Old Yale Road campus (10589 124th Street) had previous exposure events from September 9 and 10 and September 30 to October 2, had its third exposure event from October 13 to 15;

      Princess Margaret Secondary (12870 72nd Avenue), which previously had an exposure on September 11, had additional exposures on October 12, 15, and 16;

      Queen Elizabeth Secondary School (9457 King George Boulevard), which previously had exposures on September 14 and from October 14 to 16, has added exposure dates of October 19, 21, and 22;

      Tamanawis Secondary School (12600 66 Avenue), which previously had incidents on September 17 and 30 and October 2 and 6, has had further exposures from October 13 to 14;

      W.E. Kinvig Elementary (13266 70b Avenue), which previously had exposures on October 6 to 9, added the additional dates of October 14 to 16;

      Westerman Elementary (7626 122 Street), which previously had an exposure event from October 5 to 7, had another exposure event from October 15 to 16.

      Island, Interior, and Northern Health did not add any new exposure incidents to their lists.

      You can follow Craig Takeuchi on Twitter at @cinecraig or on Facebook.