COVID-19 GN Update – March 25, 2020

Press Release

There are still no known confirmed or probable cases of COVID-19 in the territory.

The total number of people under investigation to date is 166. 116 people are currently under investigation, while 50 people are no longer under investigation.

Travel restrictions to Nunavut are now in effect.

If Nunavut residents and critical employees have not already made arrangements, they should contact [email protected] for direction about isolation and travel.

Students studying outside of Nunavut and want to travel home should contact [email protected] if they haven’t made arrangements already.

For Kitikmeot students studying in Nunavut: If you want to return to your region, you need to contact [email protected] immediately. A charter is being arranged from Rankin Inlet, so you can avoid going through Yellowknife. The FANS office will help make your travel arrangements.

Payments to our government’s vendors are now being paid immediately. We have waived the normal 20-30 day payment terms, to make sure they are paid as quickly as possible.

I’ve had questions about whether people in our smaller communities need to practice social and physical distancing. The answer is ABSOLUTELY YES. It’s vital that everyone do this. COVID-19 does not discriminate in any way, including community size.

I also want to ask parents, guardians and community members to please take the time to talk to children about social distancing and why it’s so important. I know it’s hard for them; I have young grandchildren. But they need to practice staying two metres away from their friends and family as well. Otherwise, these efforts won’t work in our communities.

In closing, I want to say this: To those who are purposely ignoring our calls to self-isolate, to stay home and to practise social and physical distance, I have this to say: DON’T be part of the problem. DON’T actively put your friends, family and community in harm’s way. Make sure YOUR behaviour isn’t dangerous and unacceptable. Stay home. There is no excuse.

Social distancing is our best defensive against COVID-19.

As part of the Government of Nunavut’s (GN) effort to protect Nunavummiut against the risk of COVID-19, GN Departments are implementing the following:

Department of Health Services

Ongoing services:

  • Access to health care services will remain available in all communities seven days a week.
  • All non-urgent requests will be triaged daily.
  • Immediate access to urgent and emergent health care services are and will continue to be available 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
  • All clients are asked to call before presenting at a health facility.
  • In Iqaluit, public health, the emergency room and inpatient unit will remain open.
  • Well baby clinics, prenatal visits and immunizations are continuing across Nunavut.
  • Physicians will continue community visits. If this is not possible, the visits will be conducted by telehealth or by phone.

Adjusted services:

  • Appointments at health facilities are being triaged; this means the appointment may be over the phone or in person.
  • Medical travel services have been reduced to urgent medical travel only. Clients will be advised of these changes and involved in discussions
  • In Iqaluit, outpatient clinics and rehab are triaging all appointments and conducting appointments. Lab and Diagnostic Imaging services at QGH are on reduced services. All upcoming appointments are being triaged.
  • MHA has moved to telephone check-in and support for some clients. Scheduled appointments for medication pick up and administration remain the same. If you are in crisis, present to the health centre.
  • Home visits to administer medications will be treated on a case-by-case basis.

Closed /Cancelled/Suspended services:

  • All non-emergent Obstetrics comprehensive ultrasounds (all regions) are temporarily postponed. All pending appointments are being assessed by Chief of Obstetrics.
  • The Wednesday evening clinics at QGH have been suspended until further notice

Department of Justice Services

  • All local community corrections offices are closed to the public until further notice. All community corrections clients are to report by phone to their Regional Managers.
  • The list of contacts can be found at:

Department of Finance Services

  • At this time the Iqaluit NULC beer and wine store will continue to operate with enhanced social distancing measures in effect. Customers are requested to stand at least two meters apart while waiting in line outside the store. Starting March 25, 2020, the store will not be accepting cash.
  • For payments due to vendors – We have waived the normal 20 and 30-day payment terms to ensure all vendor payments are provided on the next available cheque run. For any outstanding invoices, vendors can contact the departments with the contact information here –
  • For monies owing to the GN – The GN is not pursuing any internal collection activity at this time. All accounts that have been transferred to our collection agency and CRA have been placed on hold.

Ongoing services:

  • Iqaluit NULC beer and wine store hours are as follows:
    • Sunday – Closed
    • Monday – Closed
    • Tuesday – Noon to 7 p.m.
    • Wednesday – Noon to 7 p.m.
    • Thursday – Noon to 7 p.m.
    • Friday – Noon to 7 p.m.
    • Saturday – Noon to 7 p.m.

Adjusted services:

  • To reduce and prevent the risk of spreading the COVID-19 virus, the NULC beer and wine store has implemented social distancing measures in the store . NULC will be limiting the number of customers allowed in the store at a time.
  • Customers are requested to stand at least two meters apart while waiting in line outside the store. Starting March 25, 2020, the store will not be accepting cash.
  • Liquor import permits will be available for purchase in Iqaluit and Rankin Inlet in person or over the phone.
    • Iqaluit – in person at the NULC store on Monday from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. and 1 to 4:30 p.m., Tuesday to Friday from 9 to 11 a.m.
    • Iqaluit – by phone at 867-975-6869
    • Rankin Inlet – by phone at 867-645-8575 or 855-844-5488 Monday to Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 12 p.m. and 1 to 5 p.m.
  • The NULC will continue to process community orders. To place an order, please call 867-645-8575 or 855-844-5488.

Department of Education Services

Ongoing services:

  • Bus service contracts will continue to be paid during the three-week school closure.

Department of Community and Government Services

  • Core service delivery continues
  • CGS Local Government continues to maintain regular contact with hamlets to keep residents informed on emerging COVID-related municipal issues

Nunavummiut’s health is our shared responsibility! Remember: wash your hands and surfaces, practise social distancing, listen to the advice of health officials, and stay home if you’re sick.


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