Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry and Health Minister Adrian Dix update B.C. on the COVID-19 situation, April 14, 2020. (B.C. government)

B.C. prepares to host regional COVID-19 ‘virtual town halls’

One in each health authority, hosted by local MLAs

The B.C. health ministry is holding five “virtual town halls” around the province during the week starting April 17 to give people a chance to ask questions of those in charge of day-to-day response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The events will be one each for each regional health authority, Northern Health, Interior Health, Fraser Health, Vancouver Island Health and Vancouver Coastal Health. They will be hosted by local MLAs, one government and one opposition, and offer responses from regional medical officers of health and health authority CEOs.

“I think it’s very important we have an opportunity for the people who are leading our efforts in these regions, the CEOs of health authorities and medical health officers to be able to answer directly questions that people in regions have,” Health Minister Adrian Dix said April 15, adding that times and call-in details are coming soon.

The first event is set for April 17 in the Vancouver Coastal region.

RELATED: B.C. doing better on COVID-19, Premier Horgan says

RELATED: B.C. records 44 new COVID-19 cases, first Interior death

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry described the province’s efforts to extend pandemic prevention and response to remote and Indigenous communities. One of those is the use of portable testers called Genexperts, which B.C. has on hand and has converted for use to detect the novel coronavirus.

“We have been able to deploy testing to better support our more remote and Indigenous communities around the province, and that’s something that I think is going to be incredibly important for us to be able to detect cases early, to detect clusters of cases, and to appropriately and safely manage in these communities,” Henry said.

Earlier in the day, Premier John Horgan responded to calls for more enforcement of group gatherings and vacation travel on ferries or into small communities.

“I think public scorn is as effective a tool as a fine or a ticket or some other action of government,” Horgan said.


@tomfletcherbc
tfletcher@blackpress.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

BC legislatureCoronavirus

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

The Mountain Market showcases local goods

The Mountain Market is held each Sunday morning in Fernie’s Rotary Park

Summer races kick off at Fernie Alpine Resort

FAR jumps into their summer programming with mountain biking and trail running races

Summer Stories Around Town program encourages outdoor reading in Elk Valley

With storywalks and clothesline stories in Fernie and Sparwood, everyone can get reading

School District 5 identifies funding needs in yearly budget report

The SD5 board presented three main projects that need increased funding in the coming years

From baseball stars to forest fires: Southeast Fire Centre water bomber has an interesting past

Tanker 489 is stationed in Castlegar this year, but in the 1960s it belonged to the L.A. Dodgers.

B.C. sees 25 new COVID-19 cases, community exposure tracked

One death, outbreaks remain in two long-term care facilities

BREAKING: Amber Alert for two Quebec girls cancelled after bodies found

Romy Carpentier, 6, Norah Carpentier, 11, and their father, Martin Carpentier, missing since Wednesday

B.C. man prepares to be first to receive double-hand transplant in Canada

After the surgery, transplant patients face a long recovery

Grocers appear before MPs to explain decision to cut pandemic pay

Executives from three of Canada’s largest grocery chains have defended their decision to end temporary wage increases

Bringing support to Indigenous students and communities, while fulfilling a dream

Mitacs is a nonprofit organization that operates research and training programs

RCMP ‘disappointed’ by talk that race a factor in quiet Rideau Hall arrest

Corey Hurren, who is from Manitoba, is facing 22 charges

NHL’s Canadian hubs offer little economic benefit, but morale boost is valuable: experts

Games are slated to start Aug. 1 with six Canadian teams qualifying for the 24-team resumption of play

‘Made in the Cowichan Valley’ coming to a wine bottle near you

Cowichan Valley has the honour of being the first sub-GI outside of the Okanagan

VIDEO: Vancouver Island cat missing 18 months reunited with family

Blue the cat found at Victoria museum 17 kilometres from home

Most Read