One day before new restrictions on non-essential travel are set to take effect in BC, Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry said those looking to get back to nature can go camping within their local health area.
Henry’s comments come the same week that BC Premier John Horgan said the province will be enacting the new restrictions, effective as of this Friday.
They also come after BC’s Public Safety Minister clarified that for the purposes of the new restrictions, Vancouver Coastal Health and Fraser Health would be treated as a single region.
“If you do need a break, then go to a place that’s close by,” said Henry during a press conference on Thursday. “It’s fine to go for a hike within your local area. If you’re going camping, go camping within your local health area.”
Full details on the new restrictions are expected to be released on Friday.
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What health officials don’t want, she furthered, is “to go back to some weekends or holidays where we had a lot of people travelling to many different areas and having social interactions that led to transmission.”
Health officials said on Thursday that there were 1,006 new test-positive COVID-19 in the province, bringing the total number of recorded cases in the province to 122,757.
Henry said that broken down by specific health region, this equates to 241 new cases of COVID-19 in the Vancouver Coastal Health region, 600 new cases in the Fraser Health region, 37 in the Island Health region, 83 in the Interior Health region, 42 in the Northern Health region, and three new cases in individuals who normally reside outside of Canada.
Currently, 502 individuals are hospitalized with COVID-19, 161 of whom are in intensive care. The remaining people with COVID-19 are recovering at home in self-isolation.
There have been four new COVID-19-related deaths, for a total of 1,550 deaths in British Columbia.
To date, 1,500,430 vaccines have been administered in the province, 88,475 of which are second doses.