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Nunavut confirms first case of Covid-19 in Sanikiluaq

Nunavut’s Chief Public Health Officer (CPHO) Dr. Michael Patterson confirmed the territory’s first case of Covid-19 in Sanikiluaq, according to a Friday news release.

“We have initiated contact tracing in the community and our rapid response team is on standby to help manage the situation should it become necessary,” said Patterson.

“We ask residents of Sanikiluaq to remain at home at this time and limit contact with other residents including family members not residing in the same household. It is important that health measures are followed by everyone and that we all do our part to quickly contain a potential spread in the community.”

The infected individual is doing well and is in isolation, stated the release. All travel to and from Sanikiluaq has been restricted with the exceptions of cargo and emergency travel.

This case does not affect the current travel-bubble with the NWT and Churchill, Manitoba.

Territorial officials have urged calm and to not panic.

“Please remember that a confirmed case is not a reason to panic. We’ve prepared for this and are responding. All Nunavummiut should continue to practice social distancing, wash your hands, and stay home if you are feeling unwell,” said Premier Joe Savikataaq. “I wish all the best for the patient and the people of Sanikiluaq.”

Anyone who has reason to believe they have been exposed to Covid-19 is advised to call the Covid-hotline at 1-888-975-8601 between 10 a.m. and 6 p.m., or notify their community health centre right away and immediately isolate at home for 14 days. Please do not go to the health centre in person.

This story will be updated as more information is released.