While health authorities are refusing to disclose which communities confirmed COVID-19 patients reside in, businesses and individuals are filling that information gap.
In a statement on Friday, 7-Eleven Canada confirmed that a patient with COVID-19 attended their store in Ladysmith, B.C. at 434 Esplanade Avenue.
“The health and safety of our customers, employees and the communities we serve is the top priority for 7-Eleven Canada,” reads the statement.
“We have temporarily closed the store to thoroughly clean and sanitize the location, and we will re-open the store on April 2, 2020.”
In the meantime, store staff have been asked to self-isolate and stay at home for 14 days with pay in accordance with provincial health guidelines.
Customers who visited the store between March 5th and 11th have been asked to monitor how they are feeling and contact their healthcare provider or dial 811.
There are currently 22 known cases of COVID-19 on Vancouver Island, out of 271 positive cases in British Columbia.
The confirmed case in Ladysmith joins three other island cases in which the patients’ general locations have been made public – a 63-year-old man in Victoria who returned from a trip to Egypt, a confirmed case at the University of Victoria, and a case in Comox Valley confirmed by an island doctor via Facebook.
The federal government recently announced an $82 billion assistance package for Canadians and businesses struggling financially during the global pandemic.
Earlier this week, B.C. joined Alberta and Ontario in declaring a public health emergency in order to curb the spread of COVID-19.
On Wednesday, B.C. Minister of Public Safety and Solicitor General Mike Farnworth declared a provincial state of emergency to support the health ministry’s public health emergency.
The provincial government also announced the indefinite suspension of all in-person classes at K-12 schools in B.C.
Canada has tightened its borders and is denying entry to people who are not Canadian citizens or permanent residents in Canada.
U.S. citizens are no longer an exception to this rule, and non-essential travel between U.S. and Canada will be temporarily banned by March 21st. Moreover international flights have been restricted to international airports in Toronto, Montreal, Vancouver, and Calgary.
The BCCDC has set up a 2019 novel coronavirus telephone information line at 1-833-784-4397 for those who have further questions about this disease.
Anyone concerned that they may have been exposed to, or are experiencing symptoms of the novel coronavirus, should contact their primary care provider, local public health office, or call 8-1-1.
The Province has also created the 1-888-COVID-19 line to connect British Columbians needing non-medical information about the coronavirus pandemic.
As of the time of publication, the total number of COVID-19 patients worldwide has risen to 271,598.
Nearly 11,300 people have died from the illness and 90,605 have made a full recovery.