Health authority issues alerts of COVID-19 cases in Whistler and at Vancouver hotel restaurant

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      A health authority in B.C. has issued public alerts about individuals diagnosed with COVID-19 who were at several locations in Whistler, as well as a worker at a restaurant in a Vancouver hotel.

      Vancouver Coastal Health (VCH) informed the Resort Municipality of Whistler on March 19 that a group who travelled to Whistler between March 8 and 13 were confirmed to be positive for COVID-19.

      VCH did not specify the number of individuals in the group.

      In a letter to Whistler, VCH stated that one or more individuals with COVID-19 were present at three locations.

      The first location was the Rendez-vous Chalet between 1 and 2 p.m. on March 9 and between noon and 2 p.m. on March 10.

      The individuals then proceeded to the Dubh Linn Gate Pub from noon to 3 p.m. on March 10, followed by the Escape Room between 1:30 p.m. and 4 p.m. on March 10.

      Anyone who was present at these locations may have come into contact with someone who has COVID-19 and VCH is asking those individuals to monitor their symptoms until March 27, and to avoid any public spaces where social distancing cannot be practiced (a minimum of two metres from others).

      Symptoms include fever, cough, sore throat, headache, and shortness of breath.

      Whistler launched its Emergency Operations Centre on March 15, and the municipality is is asking all non-essential travel into the community and social gatherings to be cancelled or postponed.

      B.C. declared a state of emergency in the province on March 18.

      Previously on March 16, VCH issued a public notification that an individual working at the Showcase Restaurant and Bar (1122 West Hastings Street) at the Vancouver Marriott Pinnacle Downtown Hotel tested positive for COVID-19.

      The person was working at the location from 10:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. on March 10, 11, and 13.

      The individual developed mild non-respiratory symptoms during this time period.

      VCH stated that as exposure was limited to the restaurant, there wasn’t any risk to anyone outside of those times or anyone who visited other parts of the hotel.

      This case is linked to travel and other previously announced cases, and the person is now self-isolated while recovering at home.

      Anyone who attended the restaurant during those hours is asked to monitor themselves for 14 days and anyone who experiences symptoms should self-isolate at home and seek medical attention if respiratory symptoms become worse.

      More information about COVID-19 is available at the B.C. Centre for Disease Control website, and an online self-assessment tool is also available.

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