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Joint statement on first Canadian case of novel coronavirus

The coronavirus has been found in 16 countries around the world. — Submitted

Adrian Dix, Minister of Health, and Dr. Bonnie Henry, B.C.'s provincial health officer, have issued the following joint statement regarding the coronavirus in Ontario:

"We can confirm that a resident of Ontario is presumed positive for the novel coronavirus that arose late last year in Wuhan, China.

"To date, there have been no cases of illness caused by the novel coronavirus in British Columbia and the overall risk to B.C. is still considered low.

"We know our colleagues in Ontario will continue to work with their local health officials and the federal health authorities to ensure every measure is taken to prevent the spread of this virus.

"We are closely watching the situation in Canada and globally, and are meeting regularly with our counterparts across the country to make sure we are prepared if cases arise in B.C.

"The BC Centre for Disease Control has developed a diagnostic test for this new coronavirus, and they are co-ordinating staff and supplies to ensure they are prepared to quickly and accurately detect potential cases. In addition, health-care workers have been asked to be vigilant and take a travel history for anyone reporting respiratory symptoms.

"Anyone who is concerned they may have been exposed to, or are experiencing symptoms of the novel coronavirus, particularly if you have travelled to areas of China where the virus is active or been in contact with ill people from that area, should contact their health-care provider, local public health office or call 811."

For more information and latest updates, visit http://www.bccdc.ca