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False positive of only Covid-19 case puts Nunavut back at zero

The only case of Covid-19 in Nunavut turned out to be a false positive.

Chief public health officer, Dr. Michael Patterson announced Nunavut is returning to zero confirmed cases of Covid-19.

“We have a very comprehensive system of investigating and tracing Covid-19 in the territory to ensure checks and balances are in place. Testing is one component, and further tracing, monitoring and evaluating information helps us capture the whole picture,” Patterson said in a May 4 news release.

The territory’s first case was confirmed in Pond Inlet last week. With the false positive, Nunavut returns to the status it enjoyed as the only jurisdiction in Canada free of any confirmed cases of the novel coronavirus.

“As there were no other positive Covid-19 tests in Pond Inlet, we decided to ask for the original swab to be re-tested and a new test be conducted in the days following Thursday’s announcement.”

All swabs collected in the initial contact tracing process came back negative after being testing in Iqaluit.

Recently imposed travel restrictions for Pond Inlet have been lifted. Travel between the community and others may resume effective immediately. All territory-wide public health orders will remain.

“While this is a relief for many Nunavummiut, it does not mean anyone should relax or ease up on physical distancing, handwashing and cleaning surfaces often, and staying home,” stated Premier Joe Savikataaq.

“Please remain diligent in practicing these measures and keeping yourself and one another well. It’s up to all of us to keep our communities safe.”