B.C. provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry gives a daily briefing on COVID-19 cases at an almost empty B.C. Legislature press theatre in Victoria, B.C., on March 25, 2020. (Don Craig/B.C. government)

B.C. provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry gives a daily briefing on COVID-19 cases at an almost empty B.C. Legislature press theatre in Victoria, B.C., on March 25, 2020. (Don Craig/B.C. government)

B.C. records 35 new COVID-19 cases; five inmates at Mission jail in hospital

B.C. has 482 active confirmed cases as of Saturday

Three more people in B.C. have died from COVID-19 as the province recorded 35 new cases on Saturday (April 11).

B.C. is dealing with 482 active confirmed cases as of Saturday, provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry said during a mid-day news conference.

Twenty-six of those cases are from within the Mission Institution, a federal penitentiary in the Lower Mainland. Five of those inmates are currently in hospital.

Henry said Fraser Health is working with federal counterparts to deal with the outbreak.

Meanwhile, health officials in the Interior are continuing to support efforts to reduce the spread of the virus at the provincially-operated Okanagan Correctional Centre after one inmate tested positive there on April 2.

Henry said the contrasting number of transmissions in the federal penitentiary compared to the provinciall-run facility could be due to early identification and isolation.

“It’s the same analogy for our long-term care homes: if you’re able to catch it early, particularly if it’s a worker versus a resident, the chances of transmission happening to others in that area goes down dramatically.”

The province has now confirmed 1,445 cases of the novel coronavirus. Fifty-eight people have died, with at least 30 of those fatalities linked to a number of outbreaks across care homes in B.C.

Meanwhile, 905 people have fully recovered from the virus, which has no cure or vaccine.

While wishing everyone a happy Easter long weekend, Henry also continued to urge people to stay close to home.

“I sincerely hope that most people have avoided any unnecessary travel” this weekend, she said. “We know these physical distancing measures are in place, and we know they’re so important to be able to continue the trend we are having in managing this pandemic.”

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