B.C.’s first coronavirus case confirmed by additional tests

Dr. Bonnie Henry

DR. Bonnie Henry, B.C.’s Provincial Health Officer (PHO), on Thursday issued the following statement regarding the first case of novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV):

“On January 27, our BC Centre for Disease Control public health lab locally confirmed a presumed positive test for 2019-nCoV. Following this, samples were sent to the National Medical Laboratory in Winnipeg for additional testing.

“This afternoon, those tests returned positive for 2019-nCoV, confirming the presumed case is indeed novel coronavirus.

“Public health officials are in regular contact with the individual who is in isolation at home.”

She added: “The risk of spread of this virus within British Columbia remains low at this time. All necessary precautions are being taken to prevent the spread of infection. We have multiple systems in place to prepare for, detect and respond to prevent the spread of serious infectious diseases in the province.

“It is not necessary for the general public to take special precautions beyond the usual measures recommended to prevent other common respiratory viruses during the winter period. Regular handwashing, coughing or sneezing into your elbow sleeve, disposing of tissues appropriately and avoiding contact with sick people are important ways to prevent the spread of respiratory illness generally.

“Anyone who is concerned they may have been exposed to, or are experiencing symptoms of, the coronavirus should contact their primary-care provider, local public health office or call 811.”

For more information and the latest updates on 2019-nCoV, follow the BC Centre for Disease Control on Twitter @CDCofBC or visit its website: http://www.bccdc.ca/

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