A nurse holds swabs and a test tube kit to test people for COVID-19, the disease that is caused by the new coronavirus, at a drive through station set up in the parking lot of the Beaumont Hospital in Royal Oak, Mich., Monday, March 16, 2020. (AP Photo/Paul Sancya)

B.C. adapts testing strategy for COVID-19

Province received shipment of masks, COVID-19 swabs on Tuesday

As the World Health Organization directs countries to “test, test, test every suspected case” of the novel coronavirus, B.C. will continue to upkeep its supply, the province says.

Slightly more than 6,300 people have been swabbed for the disease in B.C., as of March 13, and more than 34,000 people have been tested nationwide.

So far, 186 British Columbians have tested positive for the novel coronavirus. Seven of those people have died, with six of those deaths linked to an outbreak at the Lynn Valley Care Home in North Vancouver and another man, in his 80s, from the Fraser Health region.

Six people have recovered.

Health Minister Adrian Dix said during a daily health briefing on Tuesday, March 17, that the province has received a new shipment of COVID-19 swabs used to test for the virus, as well as more masks to protect health care workers on the front lines.

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry said the big spike in positive COVID-19 cases in just one days time was a matter of the labs catching up to the number of swaps needing to be tested.

B.C. has transitioned its testing strategy to targeting clusters and outbreaks, as well as those seeing the most adverse symptoms.

In a statement, Provincial Health Authority Service people with mild symptoms who can recover on their own at home don’t need testing because the medical care and advice is the same regardless of whether they test positive or not.

In the event of shortages, health officials said there are other types of swabs available, such as those used for sexually transmitting infection testing, that might be used to test for COVID-19.


@ashwadhwani
ashley.wadhwani@bpdigital.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Coronavirus

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

Just Posted

Campbell River Arts Council’s Banner Project coming to a home near you

‘Banners will be reflective of how a community can stay positive even in difficult times,’ – CRAC executive director

B.C. firefighters only responding to most life-threatening calls during COVID-19 pandemic

The directive comes after province spoke with paramedics, fire services, according to top doctor

‘An extra $220 every 90 days’: B.C. patients pay more dispensing fees due to prescription limits

Kelowna woman says it’s outrageous to charge for refills every 30 days

Federal NDP suggests universal benefit to streamline aid payments

Those who do not need money will repay at end of tax year

‘Better days will return’: Queen Elizabeth delivers message amid COVID-19 pandemic

The Queen said crisis reminds her of her first address during World War II in 1940

Campbell River community COVID-19 agencies, services and resources list

The list outlines status of social agencies in the community

Emergency aid portal opens Monday, cash could be in bank accounts by end of week: Trudeau

Emergency benefit will provide $2,000 a month for those who have lost their income due to COVID-19

Education, not enforcement: B.C. bylaw officers keeping a watch on physical distancing

A kind word, it turns out, has usually been all people need to hear

COVID-19: Hospitals remain safe for childbirth, say Vancouver Island care providers

North Island Hospital has been asked to share its perinatal COVID-19 response plan

Canadian cadets to mark 103rd anniversary of Vimy Ridge April 9 virtually

Idea of Captain Billie Sheridan in Williams Lake, B.C. who wondered what to do in times of COVID-19

B.C. VIEWS: Pandemic shows need for adequate care home staffing

Seniors in B.C. care homes face challenging times

QUIZ: How much do you know about hockey?

Take this test and find out how well you know Canada’s most popular winter sport

Most Read