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

Peace on the water

Harrison Lake was rather serene recently with the lack of usual traffic… Continue reading

UPDATE: Police oversight agency investigating after shots fired Saturday night in Chilliwack neighbourhood

RCMP reported a ‘distraught male’ fired at police officers on Christina Drive – IIO is on scene Sunday

Prospera Credit Union, Westminster Savings lay off over 100 staff following historic merge

2020 merger was largest credit-union merger in Canadian history

A second wave of COVID-19 is probable, if history tells us anything

B.C.’s top doctor says that what health officials have learned this round will guide response in future

Trudeau to seek 10 days of paid sick leave for Canadian workers, says talks are ongoing

Paid sick leave is key to keeping COVID-19 spread under control, prime minister says

Facing changes together: Your community, your journalists

The COVID-19 pandemic has changed the world in ways that would have… Continue reading

Vancouver Island hasn’t seen a new homegrown case of COVID-19 in two weeks

Island’s low and steady transmission rate chalked up to several factors

Eight people arrested in Victoria homeless camp after enforcement order issued

Those living in tents were given until May 20 to move indoors

Andrew Weaver says he was ready to defeat John Horgan government

Independent MLA blasts B.C. Greens over LNG opposition

20 dead in COVID-19 outbreak at Langley Lodge

There were two new cases detected, according to the Lodge’s update

44% fewer passengers flew on Canadian airlines in March 2020 than in 2019

COVID-19 pandemic has hit airlines hard as travel remains low

UPDATE: One person dead, two in critical condition after Highway 1 collision in Langley

A man and woman were taken to hospital in critical condition

Commercial rent relief applications open as feds encourage landlords to apply

Program would see government cover 50 per cent of the rent

Most Read