100 new COVID-19 cases confirmed in B.C. but no additional deaths

Another 100 new cases of COVID-19 have been confirmed in B.C., bringing the total number of active cases to 1,378.

No new deaths have been reported, while 37 patients are being treated in hospital, including 13 in intensive care, Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry and Health Minister Adrian Dix announced in a written statement on Wednesday.

Hospitalizations have now reached their highest number since May 27.

"Let's all do our part to help strengthen the well-being of all our communities – using our layers of protection, going back to our smaller, safer social interactions and all of us working together to find our balance with COVID-19," Henry and Dix said.

There are 3,101 people who are under active public health monitoring as a result of identified exposure to known cases, while 5,086 people who tested positive have recovered.

The latest numbers include two new outbreaks in the health-care system at the at Royal Arch Masonic Home in Vancouver and the the Milieu Children and Family Services Society community living facility in Surrey. There are now active outbreaks in 12 long-term care or assisted-living facilities and three acute care units of hospitals.

To date, 6,691 people have had confirmed infections of the disease caused by the novel coronavirus and 213 have died.

Earlier Wednesday, provincial officials released details of a plan to manage COVID-19 and the flu this fall and winter in order to prevent the two diseases from overwhelming the health-care system.

The plan will inject $1.6 billion into the health-care system and involve the strategic hiring and training of 7,000 health-care workers. B.C. will also launch a major vaccination campaign against influenza, with the goal of vaccinating nearly two million people.

"We have to put measures in place now to ensure our health-care centres, communities and all of us are ready for what may be ahead," Henry and Dix said in Wednesday's statement.

"Our community well-being is about ensuring we maintain our health and our economy. We need both to keep our communities and all of us resilient and strong."

Meanwhile, Vancouver Coastal Health is notifying the public of four new potential community exposure events in the region, including the Athens Cultural Club in Vancouver from Aug. 26 to Sept. 8, The West Pub in Vancouver from Aug. 20 to Sept. 8, the Flying Beaver Bar and Grill in Richmond from Aug. 28 to Sept. 3, and the You Plus One electronic music event in downtown Vancouver on the night of Aug. 29 and early morning hours of Aug. 30.

The health authority says the risk of contracting COVID-19 in connection with those events is believed to be low, but anyone who may have been exposed should monitor themselves for symptoms.

McDonald's Canada has also announced the temporary closure of two of its Lower Mainland restaurants in the last two days because of potential COVID-19 exposure. The fast food chain's location at 7229 Kingsway in Burnaby was shut down Wednesday after an employee tested positive, while the restaurant at 15574 Fraser Highway in Surrey closed Tuesday for the same reason.