B.C. announces 272 new cases of COVID-19 and 1 more death

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B.C. health officials announced 272 new cases of COVID-19 on Friday and one more death.

In a written statement, the province said there are a record high 2,390 active cases of the disease in B.C., with 78 people in hospital, 25 of whom are in intensive care

With today's death, the provincial death toll stands at 263.

Public health is actively monitoring 6,003 people across the province, who are in self-isolation due to COVID-19 exposure.

The statement from the province said there are new outbreaks at three new health-care facilities at Hawthorne Seniors Care Community, CareLife Fleetwood and Queen's Park Hospital unit 3C NMSK 2.

The outbreaks at Fort Langley Seniors Community, The Village and Sunset Manor and Good Samaritan Victoria Heights have been declared over.

There is one new community outbreak at Suncor Firebag Oil Sands.

Heading into Halloween weekend, health officials are asking British Columbians to "make it about the treats and not the tricks" and respect people who are choosing not to participate in the festivities this year.

"There are many ways to make fun memories this fall. This weekend is a great opportunity to be outside, enjoying the fall foliage and Halloween decorations," said Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry and Health Minister Adrian Dix in the joint statement.

"Now is not the time for parties or large gatherings in our homes. Instead, let's spend time with others in a safe way, outside or in venues that have COVID-19 safety plans in place."

Earlier this week, B.C. introduced new restrictions on private gatherings in homes in an effort to curb transmission, after a record 817 new cases were announced over the weekend.

The new provincial health order from Henry restricts get-togethers in private homes to no more than immediate household members and an additional "safe six."

Some of the new cases are directly linked to gatherings over the Thanksgiving weekend, particularly in the Fraser Valley and Lower Mainland areas, Henry said.

On Thursday, speaking from Surrey in the Fraser Health region, Henry highlighted the death of a woman in her 80s who contracted COVID-19 while attending a small birthday party of fewer than 10 people. She said it was a sobering reminder of the risk of small indoor gatherings.

COVID-19 cases in the region are surging more than anywhere else in the province. More than half of the identified cases in B.C. are in Fraser Health, although the region only accounts for 39 per cent of the population.