Today, Dr. Bonnie Henry announced 25 new cases, for a total of 1,724 cases in British Columbia. Interior Health is stable at 153 cases.
Premier John Horgan acknowledges that people in the rural areas of BC face challenges when it comes to health care and transportation needs. The plan includes 55 additional ambulances to connect communities to existing health centres. The investment also includes five new air-based medical transportation options, including helicopters and planes. For Creston, we now have a third ambulance to our disposal.
Chief medical health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry says the province is trying to be creative about a potential return to the classroom and is working closely with stakeholders in the education sector. “Some older children, for example, may not go back to school. They might continue virtual classrooms,” Dr. Henry said. “But we do need, for younger children, some way for them to be safe during the day so that parents can go back to work. But it may be some hybrid, as well, where some children are in classes certain days, and others are in other days so that we’re able to maintain some physical distancing and safe ways of doing this.” I know of more than one disappointed children that will think this is terrible news!
There are so many theories on where COVID-19 comes from. It is exhausting at the best of times, and the amount of (Facebook) news is overwhelming. Theories that the novel coronavirus was engineered in a lab using HIV, that stem cells are a potent weapon against the new pandemic, perhaps the government plans to control us and people with blood type A are more susceptible to COVID-19. None of these “discoveries” have been proven, but all have been widely disseminated. They’re examples of what many scientists are beginning to fear is an erosion of traditional safeguards against lousy science. LitCovid, a hub for papers on COVID-19, says more than 1,600 articles on the topic were published last week alone. Typically, a scientist with new findings writes them up and submits them to a journal. An editorial committee looks for problems, checks the findings against other research and puts them through the kind of scrutiny that leads to stronger work. This process takes months or even years. COVID-19 isn’t giving us that kind of time. Increasingly, medical scientists have turned to “preprint sites,” where work is posted within days.
“If someone tells you something remarkable, you need to find something else to back it up.” In other words, don’t believe everything you read.
At this point, what we care about is keeping our vulnerable people safe through social distancing, avoiding crowds and isolating if you’re sick.
Living through a pandemic is uncharted territory for many of us, and we don’t really know where we’re going and what the rest of the year will look like. And so I think that the worst thing we can do is start to think ‘Well, I’m glad we missed that.’ Because what we really should be thinking is, ‘I’m so glad we’ve had this extra time to prepare.’
And if it’s not as bad as we thought at the end of it all - celebrate that. But we’re too early to start celebrating now.
In Dr. Bonnie Henry’s words, “Many are looking ahead and thinking about getting back to work. Now is the time to start thinking about how you can do that safely with precautions in place.
“Our focus is to ensure the storm has lessened so that our workers, entrepreneurs and business owners can join the essential workers who have done so much these past weeks to keep our economy going. Let’s stay vigilant, connected and committed. We will get through this by remaining united and working together in our common purpose to flatten the curve.”
Dr. Nerine Kleinhans on behalf of the Creston Valley Physicians and Medical Staff.