British Columbia provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry arrives for a news conference to give an update on the coronavirus, in Vancouver, on Wednesday, March 18, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck

55 healthcare workers have tested positive for COVID-19 in B.C.

B.C. now has had 462 active cases

B.C.’s top doctor has confirmed that a child under the age of 10 who tested positive for COVID-19 has received hospital care.

On Wednesday (March 25) provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry announced 42 new cases since the day prior, bringing the total number of confirmed cases to 659 and total number of active cases to 462.

She also confirmed another death – linked to the Lynn Valley Care Centre – bringing the total number of fatalities in B.C. to 14.

That includes 64 people who have been hospitalized, with 26 in intensive care. Meanwhile, 183 have fully recovered.

When asked by Black Press Media about the ages of those seeing the most severe effects of the novel coronavirus, Henry said that data wasn’t readily available but did confirm that at least one child had been hospitalized.

Those who have died from the disease have almost all been over the age of 70, with most linked to the outbreak at the North Vancouver care home, except for a Lower Mainland dentist who has been identified as a man in his 60s. The B.C. Coroners Service is currently investigating if his death was the result of the coronavirus.

READ MORE: Weddings, big gatherings have to stop, B.C.’s COVID-19 doctor says

According to Henry, most of the people who are currently in the intensive care unit are over the age of 60.

She wasn’t able to provide any further details on the child, including whether or not the individual was still in the hospital or if the case was travel-related or a community transmission.

On Friday, health officials are expected to give a weekly update on the epidemiology trends of the disease in B.C.

As the number of British Columbians who have contracted the disease continues to rise, so has the number of healthcare workers on the front lines testing positive, which has now reached a total of 55.

Henry confirmed that the outbreak at another Vancouver-based care home, the Haro Park Centre, has worsened in recent days, with 28 residents and 27 staff members testing positive.

A new long-term care home has also been identified as the location of a new confirmed case, after a healthcare worker at Broadway Pentecostal Lodge in Vancouver tested positive.

Henry said that the number of cases across the province will continue to rise as the imcubation period still stands at roughly two weeks. That means the province won’t see the impacts of limitations on social contact until next week.

“Even if you think you have a little bit of a cold, you need to stay away from others,” Henry said. “It’s a bit of dance right now. With all of our measures plus our testing strategy, I want to see these numbers down.”

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ashley.wadhwani@bpdigital.ca

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