Five new COVID cases reported in northern B.C.

Five new cases of COVID-19 were reported in the Northern Health region on Friday.

in a joint statement issued on Friday afternoon, provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry and deputy minister of health said the total number of cases in northern B.C. since the start of the pandemic grew to 350.

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"Today, we are announcing 155 new cases, including nine epi-linked cases, for a total of 11,189 cases in British Columbia," Henry and Brown said. "There are 1,513 active cases of COVID-19 in the province, 3,713 people who are under active public health monitoring as a result of identified exposure to known cases and 9,387 people who tested positive have recovered."

Throughout the province, 72 people with COVID-19 were hospitalized, including 26 in intensive care. The number of active cases and hospitalizations in the Northern Health region wasn't provided, but on Friday the B.C. Centre for Disease Control reported 15 active cases in the north, with one person hospitalized and in intensive care.

"There has been one new COVID-19 related death, for a total of 251 deaths in British Columbia," Brown and Henry said. "We offer our condolences to everyone who has lost their loved ones during the COVID-19 pandemic."

With advance voting open this week for the provincial election, Henry and Brown reminded voters to use their COVID-sense when voting.

"To ensure the safety of voters, election workers and candidates, Elections BC has COVID-19 safety plans in place for all locations," they said. "If you are planning on voting in person, remember to give others the space to stay safe when going to vote, wash your hands before and after voting, and consider using a mask if distancing is a challenge. If you are self-isolating due to COVID-19 or are feeling unwell, you can still vote without going to a voting place. Contact Elections BC at 1-800-661-8683 for more information or assistance."

Data released by the B.C. Centre for Disease Control on Thursday shows that between January and the end of September, there had been 56 cases of COVID-19 in the Prince George area. The area includes communities like Mackenzie and Valemount.

There was 27 new cases between Oct. 2 and Thursday in the three health service delivery areas that make up Northern Health – 15 in the Northern Interior (which includes Prince George), and six each in the Northwest and Northeast.

Between Jan. 1 and Oct. 15, there have been 120 cases of COVID-19 in the Northern Interior health service delivery area, the B.C. CDC reported.

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