Health officials in British Columbia are reminding residents to follow public health orders and restrictions after a significant rise in cases from earlier this week.
Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry and Health Minister Adrian Dix say 617 new cases have been recorded, for a total of 75,327 infections.
B.C. had 348 cases between Sunday and Monday, and the average has been under 500 daily infections in the last month.
Henry and Dix say in a joint statement that much of the uptick in cases has been in the Lower Mainland and the northern region.
They also reported four more deaths, for a total of 1,321 fatalities in the province since the start of the pandemic.
Henry and Dix say protective measures such as maintaining a safe distance from others, regular hand washing and using a mask in all public spaces must be continued.
They say that so far, the province has administered 180,691 doses of vaccine, nearly 30,000 of which are second shots.
“We all know what we need to do. Until we have widespread vaccine availability, these small steps make a big difference in helping to keep all of us safe,” they say in the statement.
“COVID-19 continues to challenge all of us, which is why taking care of our physical and mental well-being is so important to get us through the difficult days and get to the brighter days ahead.”
This report by The Canadian Press was first published Feb. 18, 2021.
The Canadian Press