British Columbia

What you need to know about COVID-19 in B.C. for May 31, 2020

B.C. health officials announced 11 new cases and no new deaths on Saturday.

B.C. health officials announced 11 new cases, no new deaths on Saturday

Patrons sit at the Water Street Cafe in Vancouver. Restaurants across B.C. have begun to reopen as the province continues Phase 2 of its reopening plan. (Ben Nelms/CBC)

The latest:

  • On Saturday, Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry announced 11 new cases of COVID-19.
  • It marked the third time this week there were no new deaths announced. 
  • This week saw the lowest number of deaths and new cases since B.C. declared a public health emergency in March.
  • To date, there have been 2,573 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in B.C. and 164 people have died of the illness.
  • The next provincial health update will be on Monday. 

Parents across British Columbia are preparing to send their children back to school for the last few weeks of the year, starting Monday. 

Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry says the government thought carefully about the time to open up schools across B.C., and the drop in cases supports their decision.

Henry also pushed back over concerns about a rise in COVID-19 cases among children as schools reopen, saying the province knows how to manage those cases.

More changes

People across the province may notice a few other changes this week as the spread of COVID-19 remains relatively subdued in B.C. compared to some other provinces in Canada.

British Columbia's lowest paid workers get a pay increase Monday with a scheduled minimum wage hike at a crucial time for small businesses as they look for ways to continue operating during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The increase is part of the government's pledge to implement a $15 per hour minimum wage by next year after a decade of no increases from 2001 to 2011.

The minimum wage jumps by 75 cents to $14.60 an hour on Monday.

In Metro Vancouver, TransLink will start charging for buses again on Monday — the same day buses will start running at up to two-thirds capacity. 

Latest numbers

For the third time this week, Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry said on Saturday there were no new deaths caused by COVID-19. 

Henry announced 11 new cases yesterday, bringing the province's total to 2,573. There are 228 active cases throughout the province. 

Thirty-five people are in hospital, five of them in acute care. 

However, Henry warned "we still need to be cautious," especially when it comes to large groups of people. 

On Saturday, she announced an order restricting overnight camps for children and youth across the province during the summer.

The next health update will be Monday. 

READ MORE:

Top COVID-19 stories today

Important reminders:

B.C.'s top doctor, Dr. Bonnie Henry, said the risk of contracting coronavirus in B.C. communities remains low. Health officials widely agree the most important thing you can do to prevent coronavirus and other illnesses is to wash your hands regularly and avoid touching your face. The World Health Organization said more than 80 per cent of COVID-19 infections are estimated to be mild.

What's happening elsewhere in Canada

As of Sunday morning, Canada had 90,947 confirmed and presumptive coronavirus cases.

A CBC News tally of deaths based on provincial data, regional information and CBC's reporting stood at 7,358 as of Sunday.

For a look at what's happening across the country and the world, check the CBC interactive case tracker.

What are the symptoms of COVID-19?

Common symptoms include:

  • Fever.
  • Cough.
  • Tiredness.

But more serious symptoms can develop, including difficulty breathing and pneumonia.

What should I do if I feel sick?

Stay home. Isolate yourself and call your local public health authority. Do not visit an emergency room or urgent care centre to get tested.

What can I do to protect myself?

  • Wash your hands frequently and thoroughly. Keep them clean.
  • Keep your distance from people who are sick.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth.
  • Unless you're already infected, masks won't help you.
  • Be aware of evolving travel advisories to different regions.

More detailed information on the outbreak is available on the federal government's website.

If you have a COVID-19-related story we should pursue that affects British Columbians, please email us at impact@cbc.ca

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