How BC is Bending the Curve

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As quoted April 7, 2020.  Global News. Andrew Russell.

Coronavirus: How B.C. is ‘bending’ the curve and why there’s hope for Ontario and Quebec

And while the latest data shows Ontario and Quebec continuing to report increases, experts say there is hope for Canada’s to most populous provinces, which have enacted stricter lockdowns and expanded public health measures — efforts that could lead to a similar “bending” in new cases of the virus.

On Monday, B.C. provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry announced 63 new COVID-19 cases, bringing the provincial total to 1,266, a small increase from 970 one week ago. Alberta reported 1,348 cases on Monday, up from just under 700 the week prior.

“Our percentage of new cases, as you can see, has been slowing, it’s been bending, and that’s really important,” Henry told reporters Monday.

“It’s a testament to the effort that everyone here in B.C. has been making over the past two weeks,” she said. “But we must keep that firewall strong.”

Experts are cautiously optimistic B.C. may have turned a corner in the battle against the outbreak, but say it’s still early.

“It does look like they are having some success,” said Dawn Bowdish, Canada Research Chair in aging and immunity at McMaster University. “We are not at the stage where we are reducing the number of cases but it appears that they slowed some of them.”

READ MORE: Canada may be missing thousands of coronavirus cases, experts say

Ontario and Quebec, meanwhile, saw sharp increases, with Ontario cases jumping to 4,347 cases, up from just over 1,700 a week earlier. Quebec had 8,580 cases on Monday, a dramatic rise from 3,430 one week earlier, as the province rolled out more testing.

Bowdish pointed to more widespread testing in the West and B.C.’s ability to limit the outbreaks at long-term care facilities as keys to stemming new COVID-19 cases. Ontario nursing homes have seen outbreaks at 51 facilities, including the deaths of 27 residents at Pinecrest, located in Bobcaygeon, Ont.

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