B.C. health authorities are reporting 16 new COVID-19 cases on Friday, as 187 remain active around the province.

According to a joint statement from Adrian Dix, Minister of Health, and Dr. Bonnie Henry, provincial health officer, 2,354 people of B.C.’s 2,709 total cases have recovered.

As well, B.C.’s death toll has gone up for the first time in a week.

“There has been one new COVID-19 related death in the Vancouver Coastal Health region, for a total of 168 deaths in British Columbia. We offer our condolences to everyone who has lost their loved ones during the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Henry and Dix.

Ine new infection has been reported in the Interior Health region, totalling 196 so far.

Regulations around food and liquor services have been amended to help better protect customers and workers.

“The requirements for this sector have been adjusted in response to small clusters of new cases in businesses, as employees spend more time together and in recognition that a safe number of patrons is highly dependent on the amount of space within each location, not the restaurant capacity,” said the joint statement from Dic and Henry. “Food service owners need to remember that protecting your employees and patrons requires layers of protection in the kitchen and in the dining area. Plans need to include such things as frequent handwashing, increased cleaning, using barriers in kitchens and dining areas, and giving lots of space between tables.”

As well, customers to bars and restaurants are asked to run down a checklist and ask themselves if they are feeling sick, is the group small, does the business have a COVID-19 plan and are barriers in place.