Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry says B.C. will use police to enforce health orders if necessary. (B.C. government)

COVID-19 precautions ‘not optional,’ B.C.’s Dr. Bonnie Henry warns

U.S. coronavirus study proves young people get seriously ill

Keeping at least one metre apart, covering coughs and washing your hands frequently aren’t just suggestions, they are orders in B.C.’s war on COVID-19.

That’s the message being sent more forcefully by Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry and Health Minister Adrian Dix as new cases pile up by dozens per day, and the health care system waits for new shipments of N95 medical masks and ventilators for intensive care.

B.C.’s emergency powers allow police enforcement at any time, to ration supplies or detain people who don’t think the rules apply to them.

“This is not optional, and I want to be very clear that everybody has to take these actions now,” Henry said at her March 19 briefing in Vancouver, where 40 more positive tests and B.C.’s eighth death.

RELATED: Don’t try to stockpile drugs, B.C. pharmacists warn

RELATED: B.C. coronavirus cases rise to 271, eight deaths

As young people trade images of spring break parties, it’s proving to be a myth that only old people get seriously sick from COVID-19. The U.S. Centres for Disease Control and Prevention issued its first major study this week, showing one in five Americans hospitalized from Feb. 12 to March 16 is between the ages of 20 and 44. People under 65 are a significant share of those who need an Intensive Care Unit with ventilator.

Health Minister Adrian Dix stresses that B.C. is in a public health “battle” where precautions must be adhered to, or other people will suffer in the weeks and months ahead.

“So right now and in the days and weeks and months ahead we need to do what we’re asked to do,” Dix said. “We need to do it 100 per cent. We need to do it 100 per cent and we need to keep doing it until we’re told we can stop. That’s the fight we’re in.”


@tomfletcherbc
tfletcher@blackpress.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

BC legislatureCoronavirus

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

COVID-19: Diabetes Canada donation bins becoming garbage dumps amid pandemic

Diabetes Canada has asked residents to stop overflowing bins with donations and garbage

Princeton Council chamber doors closed to public – meetings can be viewed online

Princeton council will continue to hold regular meetings but the doors to… Continue reading

Summerland to offer mental health webinar

Event will examine ways of coping during COVID-19 pandemic

Spike of visitors to Princeton-area stressing grocery supply chain and healthcare teams

‘We are really not set up to have this many people at this time of year.’ Area H Director Bob Coyne

Okanagan temperatures to be in the double digits all week

Kelowna’s forecast projects a high of 17 degrees on Thursday

Okanagan College grading system critical despite COVID-19 pandemic

On heels of petition penned by student, VP academic says grading system necessary for accurate assessments

Here’s how to talk to people who aren’t taking physical distancing seriously

Approach the conversation with empathy says conflict expert

B.C. clears more acute hospital beds as COVID-19 case growth slows

Province holding about 40% of beds empty for peak still to come

As 500K+ apply for emergency benefit, Trudeau says aid coming for Canadians left behind

Canada Emergency Response Benefit provides $2,000 per month

Okanagan tourism continues to suffer following COVID-19 pandemic

The District of Lake Country voted to suspend tourism on March 31

Van crashes into Kamloops home

Police say the driver went into medical distress before the crash

Kelowna RCMP seizes guns, illicit drugs following disturbance

RCMP seized three firearms and a variety of suspected illicit and prescription drugs

Salmon Arm Silverbacks remember Humboldt Broncos on anniversary of fatal crash

Sixteen people killed, 13 injured after semi collided with team bus on April 6, 2018

Most Read