Coronavirus: Interior Health region now at 128 confirmed cases of COVID-19

There are now 128 confirmed cases of coronavirus in the Interior Health region, the provincial government announced on Saturday.

That’s a slight increase of two cases from Friday when 126 confirmed cases of COVID-19 were announced.

On Wednesday, there were 114 cases in the region, which rose by seven to 121 on Thursday.

Also Saturday, provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry announced three more deaths, upping the provincial total to 38.

She also said there are now 1,203 cases of COVID-19 throughout the province following 29 new cases, but added 704 people have fully recovered after contracting the virus.

As has been the case since coronavirus first landed in B.C., most are in the Lower Mainland: 554 in Vancouver Coastal and 424 in Fraser Health. There are also 76 cases on Vancouver Island and 21 in the Northern Health region.

Henry warned “the risk remains very high for us right now in British Columbia; we are in the thick of it and we must hold our line. This is our time to be unwavering in our commitment to keep our firewall strong.”

Regarding news earlier in the week of an inmate testing positive for COVID-19 at an Okanagan prison, Henry said on Saturday there were no additional cases yet at the Okanagan Correctional Centre.

Henry also touched on how COVID-19 is similar to other respiratory viruses.

“What we do know is that there’s some evidence that this coronavirus is behaving like other coronaviruses,” said Henry, “which means that when we have increased UV light and warmer temperatures, it tends to fade away.

“That’s what we see with influenza, for example, every year. We see there’s a season where we see more influenza and then it tends to go away for us in the northern hemisphere in the summer, and then we see an emergence again in the fall.”

Henry said the concern is that during fall, “that we’ll start to see it increasing naturally again, even if the measures that we’ve taken are in place. So we need to watch that carefully.”

She said, “we don’t know for sure how this virus is going to behave, but that’s what other respiratory viruses do on a cyclical basis.”

Henry added, though, that when new viruses come along, they may not fade away.

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