North COVID-free nearly a month

Northern B.C. has gone nearly a month without a new case of COVID-19 being detected.

On Monday, provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry announced there had been a total of 31 new test-positive cases in B.C since Friday's update. In the Northern Health region there hasn't been a new case reported since June 8.

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The total number of cases in B.C. since the start of the pandemic increased to 2,978, while the number in the north remained at 65. 

As of Monday, there were 166 active cases left in B.C., Henry said. Of those cases, 16 patients were hospitalized, including four in intensive care.

There are no active cases in the north, and no deaths in northern B.C. have been linked to COVID-19, according to data released by the B.C. Centre for Disease Control on July 3.

"We have low enough rates in our communities now that we can manage this," Henry said. "The 'new normal' rules are very doable. We all can do, and must do, the right thing."

Since Friday there were five deaths linked to COVID-19 in B.C. , B.C. Health Minister Adrian Dix said. In addition, one death that occurred in June has now been attributed to COVID-19, bringing the province's death toll from the pandemic to 183.

"To lose six people, all in long-term care, is a source of enormous grief," Dix said.

While B.C. is in the third week of Phase 3 of its Restart Plan and has seen low numbers of new cases, Dix said, that's not reason for people to relax their guard.

"Clearly the trend line is in the opposite direction. (Internationally) these have been the highest days in terms of cases," Dix said. "The struggle in the U.S.... is a message to be humble and vigilant."

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