Personal protective equipment is seen in the COVID-19 intensive care unit at St. Paul’s hospital in downtown Vancouver, Tuesday, April 21, 2020. A recent survey by the Canadian Medical Association found most doctors who responded have not seen an improvement in the supply of personal protective equipment in the last month. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward

B.C. surpasses 2,000 COVID-19 cases; roughly 60% of patients have recovered

Less than 100 people are in hospital due to the contagious respiratory illness

B.C. recorded 55 more confirmed cases of COVID-19 on Tuesday (April 28), surpassing 2,000 cases since the novel coronavirus touched down in the province.

This includes 803 in Vancouver Coastal Health’s region, 918 within the Fraser Health Authority, 119 on Vancouver Island, 168 within the Interior Health Authority and 94 within Northern Health Authority.

Additionally, two more people have died related to COVID-19, bringing the total number of fatalities to 105, provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry confirmed during an afternoon news conference.

Ninety-four people are in hospital, with 37 of those in intensive care.

Roughly 1,239 patients have recovered, meaning there are 709 active confirmed cases in B.C.

Henry said she knows the government’s restrictions come with “significant social, financial, emotional, and health impacts on all of us,” but that officials are using the data and science to find the “delicate balance” between creating a functioning community while keeping people safe from the virus.

“Moving forward, even as we increase our social connections and we increase our economic connections, and we move forward in this pandemic together, what you do does, and will continue to make a difference in the days and weeks ahead,” Henry said.

ALSO READ: Should a vaccine for COVID-19 be made mandatory in Canada, once it’s created?

Most of the new cases are connected to known outbreaks in the community, including at one prison and a pair of poultry plants – all within the Lower Mainland.

There are 46 cases connected to the Superior Poultry Processors plant in Coquitlam and 34 at United Poultry in Vancouver. At Mission Institution, 112 inmates and 12 staff members have tested positive for the disease. Every inmate has now been tested, Henry said.

Health Minister Adrian Dix said the slow-but-steady decline in new cases means that there are 4,115 vacant hospital beds currently available in B.C.

In his weekly update on personal protective equipment, Dix said the province has gathered 170,000 N95 masks, 350,000 pieces of eye protection, 100,000 surgical masks, 180,000 gowns and nearly 5 million pairs of gloves.

“As another key indicator of the success since the start of COVID-19 in B.C., wee have not yet had to move to any alternative N95 respirators,” Dix said. “This has given us the opportunity to continue to secure a contingency of alternate resources from reliable and credible vendors and, importantly, to take the time to test these products for their filtration, fluid resistance fit and overall effectiveness.”

Dix added that if the time comes B.C. needs to use these alternative products, officials will know they are safe through adequate testing.


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ashley.wadhwani@bpdigital.ca

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