A Burns Lake resident, who tested positive, died a week into quarantine at home, alone, say sources.
While several members in the community are already aware of the death, Northern Health (NH) has not offered any conclusive information on this, nor has there been an official confirmation from the health authorities.
When asked about the specific death in the community, Northern Health representative Eryn Collins wrote in an email to Lakes District News on Nov.27, “we confirm only minimal details about COVID deaths in our region, for privacy reasons – such as age range and gender; we typically would not share information about where a person was from, without permission from the family. To date (and as per the dashboard), NH has had 6 COVID-related deaths in the region.”
The six COVID-related deaths, as of Nov. 30, had been on the dashboard for several days.
“Case counts by local health area are updated monthly on the BCCDC website. While we don’t control this data, the map will likely be updated with case counts up to the end of November, in the first week or so of December,” said Collins.
Earlier last week, a COVID case was confirmed at the William Konkin Elementary (WKE) school and NH notified the school, who in turn informed the parents of a possible COVID-19 exposure incident. NH however maintained that this notification was just a precaution and receiving such a notification does not mean that your child has been exposed. “If they are not contacted by public health or school authority, you do not need to take any action,” said the NH representative.
Collins also said that “anyone experiencing potential COVID-19 symptoms, including Burns Lake residents, should self-isolate, and contact their primary care provider or the NH COVID-19 Online Clinic and Info Line/Virtual Clinic at 1-844-645-7811, to be assessed and referred for testing.”
The local site for COVID-19 testing centre in the area is Lakes District Hospital. However, Collins said that people should not head to a testing centre without a prior appointment.
As of Nov. 26, NH’s test result turnaround average was 36 hours.
Last week’s case at WKE and another case of the deceased’s relative, come as health authorities continue to emphasize the wearing of masks, now a public safety order, and to continue to follow provincial health orders and guidelines.
But there remain reports of people refusing to wear masks in public indoor and retail spaces.
An update from the ministry addressed this issue and said that anyone without a mask in an indoor public place or who refuses to comply with the direction of an enforcement officer, including the direction to leave the space, may be subject to a $230 fine.
At the time of going to press, B.C. had a total of 991 new COVID-19 cases, taking the provincial total to 30,884 cases till date.