Blueberry River First Nations, located 70 kilometres north of Fort St. John. (BRFN photo)

Remote B.C. First Nation confirms positive COVID-19 case

A number of nations in B.C. have activated lock downs to prevent COVID-19 from entering community

A member of a First Nation located in a remote area of northeastern B.C. has contracted the novel coronavirus, COVID-19, prompting a lock down on the reserve.

The case was identified within the Blueberry River First Nations on Friday (April 9), according to a statement released that day.

Blueberry River First Nations is about 70 kilometres north of Fort St. John.

According to the First Nations’ council, the member “has been in contact with several individuals.” The nation has activated its pandemic plan, which includes a lock down on any visitors entering the reserve.

Anyone who came into contact with the member who contracted the virus is being directed to self-isolate.

Concerns have been raised by Indigenous groups across the country about what resources will be provided to nations to prevent potential outbreaks. Many groups, including the Blueberry River First Nations, face vulnerabilities such as extremely limited health resources, access to food and running water, as well as limited cellular service. As well, longstanding social and economic inequities have made Indigenous people more at-risk of diseases and adverse health impacts.

READ MORE: Concerns raised over COVID-19 outbreak plans for Indigenous communities

A number of nations in B.C. have activated lock downs, disallowing travellers from entering or passing through, as well as declaring states of emergency to combat COVID-19, which has no cure nor vaccine.

Last month, the federal government announced $305-million to support Indigenous communities across Canada as they battle and prepare for COVID-19.

Here in B.C., the First Nations Health Authority has unveiled the First Nations Virtual Doctor of the Day program, which will help those in remote locations access health care services during the pandemic.

READ MORE: B.C. First Nations Health Authority launches virtual doctor program

On Friday (April 10), Marc Miller, the federal minister of Indigenous Services, announced 40 confirmed cases of COVID-19 on First Nation reserves and five cases in the Nunavik region of northern Quebec.

He said communities can choose to how to use the federal funds, such as purchasing isolation units and personal protective equipment.

“Let me be clear. This is just the beginning. We know more support will be needed. And we will be there to make sure no Indigenous community is left behind,” Miller said.

– with files from The Canadian Press


@ashwadhwani
ashley.wadhwani@bpdigital.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

CoronavirusFirst Nations

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

Just Posted

Williams Lake First Nation inks historic cannabis deal with B.C. government

The agreement paves the way for WLFN to sell cannabis to the government, and open stores across B.C.

Unofficial holidays: Here’s what people are celebrating for the week of Sept. 20 to 26

Rabbit Day, Hobbit Day and One-Hit Wonder Day are all coming up this week

Interior Health reports three additional COVID-19 cases in region

The number of cases in the region since the beginning of the pandemic are now at 492

Vehicle found “burnt to a crisp” off of Hwy 5

Update from Clearwater RCMP detachment

COVID-19: 4 more deaths, 366 new cases in B.C. since Friday

A total of 8,208 people in B.C. have tested positive for COVID-19 since January

16 COVID-19 cases reported in Interior Health region

One person is in hospital and 34 people are isolating

Group wants Parliament, courts to hold social media to same standard as publishers

Daniel Bernhard made the comments shortly after Friends of Canadian Broadcasting released a research paper

B.C.’s Chase Claypool catches first NFL touchdown pass

Abbotsford grad establishes new record for longest scrimmage TD by a Canadian

B.C. has highest number of active COVID-19 cases per capita, federal data shows

B.C. currently has 1,803 active cases after weeks of COVID-19 spikes in the province

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

181 days gone: Family continues to look for man last seen in RCMP custody 6 months ago

Brandon Sakebow’s last known location was leaving Mission RCMP cell, police say; family has doubts

B.C. unveils new cannabis sales programs to help small, Indigenous growers

Government did not say how it will define small producers, but says nurseries will be included in the policy

Most Read