Woman with presumed case of COVID-19 in critical condition in B.C.

VICTORIA — A woman in her 80s with a presumptive case of the novel coronavirus is in critical condition at a Vancouver hospital.

Dr. Bonnie Henry, the provincial health officer, said Wednesday the woman developed symptoms a couple of days after returning from Hong Kong and India about one week ago.

It is the 13th case of COVID-19 in British Columbia, bringing Canada's total number of infections to 34.

Henry said the woman was part of a group tour in India alongside other Canadians who returned to regions outside B.C. Efforts are being made to identify and contact the people involved in the tour group, she said.

"We're looking for who else was in that group," Henry told a news conference. "What kind of exposures they might have had."

She said there have been only a few reported cases of COVID-19 from India.

"The timing of her symptom onset is much more likely to be related to Hong Kong," Henry said.

She said the woman, who also has other health issues, started feeling tired after her arrival in B.C. She called her family physician and shortly afterwards was transported by ambulance to the Vancouver General Hospital's emergency department, Henry said.

Health Minister Adrian Dix said the woman is getting the best care available.

"Our hearts go out to the family and we are doing everything we can to support this patient and all of the patients dealing with the consequences of COVID-19," he said.

Among the 12 other people in British Columbia who have tested positive for the virus, Henry said four have fully recovered and three no longer have symptoms but remain in isolation.

The remainder are considered to be in stable condition and are also in isolation at home.

"The risk is changing day-by-day globally and we are continuing to monitor carefully," Henry said.

"Within British Columbia the risk still remains very low in the province and in Canada the risk remains very low."

This report by The Canadian Press was first published March 4, 2020.

 

The Canadian Press