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Specimens to be tested for COVID-19 are seen at LifeLabs after being logged upon receipt at the company's lab, in Surrey, B.C., on Thursday, March 26, 2020.DARRYL DYCK/The Canadian Press

Health officials are reporting eight cases of COVID-19 linked to public gatherings in Kelowna, British Columbia, during and around the Canada Day long weekend.

The Interior Health Authority says people who attended private gatherings, restaurants and bars from June 25 to July 6 in downtown and waterfront areas of the city may have been exposed to the illness.

Six of the eight cases are people who don’t live in the region and public health contact tracing is under way.

Officials are urging anyone who took part in such gatherings during this time period to closely monitor themselves for symptoms.

They say anyone who develops symptoms should get tested for COVID-19.

Interior Health says it is working with other jurisdictions to determine the source of the disease for these cases.

“This advisory comes after IH’s (Interior Health’s) communicable disease unit has been made aware of a number of positive COVID-19 cases attending private gatherings and visiting businesses over these dates,” the authority said in a release Friday.

“Of specific concern are larger Canada Day and holiday weekend events.”

The Interior Health Authority says it provides services to 801,000 people in 59 incorporated municipalities in B.C.’s southern Interior.

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