Update: February 3, 2020

The BCCDC is continuing to monitor, assess, and test for cases of 2019-nCoV in BC. At the time of writing, there is still only one confirmed case in British Columbia. The risk to the public remains low.

Experts recommend taking similar precautions to those of the common cold or flu, including:
– Practice good hand hygiene by frequently washing your hands with regular soap and water
– Cough and sneeze into your arm or elbow (rather than your hands)
– Don’t share food, drinks, utensils, etc
– Avoid interactions with people who are ill
– If you are sick yourself, stay home and away from others

It’s also recommended that masks should be used by those who are ill to prevent others from becoming infected, because a mask will help keep a person’s droplets out of the air and off of surfaces. It’s less effective to wear a mask if you’re a healthy person in the community.

For more information about 2019-nCoV including symptoms, prevention, diagnosis, treatment, and transmission visit the BCCDC website.

January 28, 2020

Health Minister Adrian Dix and Provincial Health Officer Dr Bonnie Henry held a press conference at the BC Centre for Disease Control (BCCDC) today to announce the first presumptive positive case of the novel coronavirus, 2019-nCOV, in British Columbia.

The BCCDC Public Health Laboratory (PHL) tested a sample that was confirmed positive late on January 27, 2019. This case is classified as a “presumptive positive” because the sample is now being sent to the National Microbiology Laboratory in Winnipeg for confirmation. Based on the affected individual’s symptoms and recent travel, and the accuracy of the BCCDC PHL’s testing, there is high confidence in the results.

Dr Henry emphasized that risk to the general public of BC remains very low, but that healthcare workers across the province are working diligently to monitor, test, and care for the population. The best ways for the public to protect themselves are with regular hand washing, coughing and sneezing into a tissue or your elbow, and not touching your face (especially your mouth and nose), and staying home when sick.

When accessing information about this new virus, we encourage you to use reputable sources and to avoid rumors spread on the internet and through social media. The BCCDC will be issuing periodic updates as more information comes in, and is your most trusted source of information for coronavirus in BC.

Emerging Areas Priority

As the charitable partner of the BCCDC, we support important public health projects and initiatives that keep our population safe. You can play a role in protecting the health of our population by making a tax-deductible donation to our Emerging Areas Priority.

Funding to our Emerging Areas Priority provides both the flexibility and rapid response that is necessary to address public health threats immediately, when they arise. That type of rapid response is what keeps British Columbians and Canadians safe and healthy. Make your gift to Emerging Areas today.

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