CP NewsAlert: Two more presumptive cases of the coronavirus in British Columbia

Henrietta Strickland
February 7, 2020

The patient and family members from Wuhan are in isolation at her home.

She says the patient is a woman in her 50s, who recently came into contact with her family.

However, she said some people from China have reported being ostracized and others facing the same reaction may fear contacting health authorities. Vancouver Coastal Health is undertaking a detailed case investigation and will follow up with each of her close contacts.

We are announcing a second presumptive positive case of novel coronavirus in B.C.

"We did expect [it], with all of the work we're doing with public health to monitor and assess people, and the low threshold that we have in the province to make sure we test anybody we have concerns about", Dr. Henry said.

Another 65 people died from the virus in the province on Tuesday, raising the death toll there to 479, officials said.

The new case brings Canada's total to five.

When it comes to determining when patients can be considered healthy and no longer contagious, B.C. officials have said they're following the protocols recommended by the World Health Organization.

Ottawa is preparing to evacuate Canadians from Hubei, and could fly them back as early as Thursday, after which they will be quarantined at an airbase in Trenton, Ont.

A letter sent by the government to Canadians and permanent residents of Canada now in Wuhan said a flight is to depart from the city's worldwide airport early Thursday morning. If a passenger falls sick mid-flight, they will be moved to an isolated area of the plane and, upon landing in B.C., will be transported to a facility and isolated here. Henry said the samples are on their way to the Winnipeg laboratory.

"If we start ostracizing people because they're sick that makes it much more hard for us to do our job in public health, to identify people and to be able to support and monitor them when they have this illness". As of February 4, 308 Canadians have asked for help to leave the country, but the plane can only accommodate about 250 passengers.

Canadian Forces medical personnel will be on board the flight from China and the plane will allow for a separate isolation area should a passenger develop symptoms during the flight, said Henry.

The government has already made arrangements to send a second chartered plane to Wuhan if there are enough Canadians left behind.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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