Tourism Kelowna. (Contributed)

COVID-19: Tourism Kelowna encourages community to be safe and responsible

Interior Health has identified more than 70 test-positive cases of COVID-19 since July 21

Tourism Kelowna is encouraging the community to “play safe and stay safe” after a recent outbreak of COVID-19.

As of Tuesday, July 21, Interior Health has identified more than 70 test-positive cases of the virus related to the Kelowna exposures compared to “over 60” the day previous.

Six employees at Kelowna General Hospital also tested positive over the weekend, but no further cases among hospital staff have been reported.

“Balancing the important public health issue and helping businesses recover from the devastating effects of COVID19 is delicate, and one we take very seriously,” said Lisanne Ballantyne, president and CEO of Tourism Kelowna.

Ballantyne said Tourism Kelowna realized with the move into Phase Three of the restart plan, travel in B.C. would increase as would the possibility of risk of transmission of the coronavirus.

“This is expected and was planned for, as we reopened more of our economy. Provincial public health leaders have a plan in place to identify and respond to issues. We value the important work they do and the role they play in keeping our community, and those who visit our community, safe,” she said.

Tourism Kelowna is providing health and safety messaging on its website and social media channels to remind visitors to be mindful of the spread of the virus and to travel in the city safely and responsibly.

READ MORE: As COVID-19 cases linked to Kelowna top 70, those possibly exposed denied testing

Ballantyne is encouraging the community to pay close attention to public health guidance and recommendations and for businesses to close temporarily if they so need to.

“We applaud any businesses who, if notified by Interior Health, chooses to shut down temporarily and voluntarily, or who enhances their health protocols as this demonstrates a commitment to protect the health of their customers and staff,” said Ballantyne. “They are doing the right thing for the destination.”

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