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Coronavirus: 9 new cases announced for Interior Health region

An electron microscope image of the novel coronavirus. According to the Interior Health Authority, the number of confirmed COVID-19 cases rose to 369 on Friday, up from 360 on Thursday.
An electron microscope image of the novel coronavirus. According to the Interior Health Authority, the number of confirmed COVID-19 cases rose to 369 on Friday, up from 360 on Thursday. The Associated Press

There are nine new coronavirus cases in the Interior Health region, local officials announced on Friday.

According to the Interior Health Authority (IHA), the number of confirmed COVID-19 cases rose to 369, up from 360 on Thursday.

IHA also said the number of cases linked to Kelowna since June 26th rose to 137, up from 130 from Thursday.

Read more: New B.C. coronavirus cases surge to 50 ahead of long weekend

“This is an increase in these linked cases from yesterday of seven,” said Interior Health, “which reflects additional information received while investigations are ongoing.”

It said approximately 60 per cent of the Kelowna-linked cases are considered recovered.

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IH also said it does not have specific active or recovered cases for Kelowna, “as these numbers are fluid, changing as new cases are linked to Kelowna and as additional cases are considered recovered.”

No cases are currently hospitalized, said IH, which also noted that the number of healthcare workers at Kelowna General Hospital with coronavirus remains at eight.

B.C. Day long weekend advice from Dr. Bonnie Henry
B.C. Day long weekend advice from Dr. Bonnie Henry

With the B.C. holiday long weekend here, IH medical health officer Dr. Silvina Mema said it’s a reminder to practice social distancing and prevent what happened during the Canada Day weekend in Kelowna.

“(The) July long weekend was a reminder that COVID-19 is still in our communities and can spread quickly if we are not respecting public health guidance, especially around gatherings,” said Mema.

“The increases in Kelowna started with a relatively small number of positive cases. The spread from these gatherings shows just how important it is to keep to Dr. Bonnie Henry’s recommendation of fewer faces, bigger spaces.”

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Everyone, including essential workers, must self isolate for 14-days if travelling outside of Canada
Everyone, including essential workers, must self isolate for 14-days if travelling outside of Canada

Interior Health is advising this August long weekend to avoid large gatherings, especially indoors, of people who don’t know each other.

“We are urging everyone this long weekend to keep your gatherings small; to people you know; to those in your bubble,” said Mema.

“By following public health guidance for gatherings, practices social distancing and the other recommendations to prevent the spread of COVID-19, then we can have a safe August in Interior Health.

“We all need to work together to make that possible – starting this long weekend and in the weeks ahead.”

Coronavirus: Long-term strategies for COVID-19 in Canada
Coronavirus: Long-term strategies for COVID-19 in Canada

Ongoing recommendations from Interior Health:

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  • Stay home and get tested if you are sick.
  • Maintain physical distancing of greater than two metres.
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.
  • Wear a mask when physical distancing cannot be maintained.
  • Limit your gatherings to small groups and hold them outside.
  • Keep gatherings to people you know and keep track of who attends, so contact tracing is possible.
  • Limiting gathering size in private residences to six people.
  • Get tested if you have symptoms – however mild.
  • Maintain physical distancing if you’re at a beach or lake this weekend.
A video produced by BC Children’s Hospital aims to help demystify COVID-19 testing for kids
A video produced by BC Children’s Hospital aims to help demystify COVID-19 testing for kids

According to a website that tracks COVID-19 across the globe, there are now 17,422,252 confirmed cases worldwide.

As of Friday afternoon, the U.S. had the most cases at 4,542,620. Rounding out the top five were Brazil (2,610,102); India (1,638,827), Russia (838,461) and South Africa (493,183). Canada was 22nd with 118,079.

To view the website, click here.

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