Two individuals with confirmed COVID-19 in Sahtu region, five probable COVID-19 cases in Fort Good Hope

Press Release

The Office of Chief Public Health Officer confirms that one individual has tested positive for COVID-19, and five further people have probable COVID-19 infections in Fort Good Hope. One person in Norman Wells also has a confirmed COVID-19 infection.

Actions taken

Contact tracing is underway. Public health officials and the Fort Good Hope Health Centre are working to ensure contacts are isolating. A rapid response team is being deployed to assist with testing and  further investigations.

Public risk

The investigation is in the very early stages. However, based on community exposures in Fort Good Hope, there is concern that these infections represent community transmission. It is believed that COVID-19 has likely spread further among people in the community.

The community gathering for traditional handgames held from August 5 to 9 in Fort Good Hope has been identified as a COVID-19 exposure location. It is important that anyone who attended this handgames event or was in the community of Fort Good Hope during these dates and is NOT fully vaccinated:

  • Isolate for ten days starting from the last day they attended this event or ten days after they left the community.
  • Contact their health centre or local public health unit to arrange testing.
  • This includes anyone who was in Fort Good Hope on those dates and has now travelled back to other communities who is not fully-vaccinated.

CPHO guidance for possible contacts

Furthermore, anyone who is fully vaccinated and was at the handgames event or in Fort Good Hope between August 5 and 9, or anyone who currently lives in Fort Good Hope  should:

  • Monitor for symptoms for 10 days starting the day they left Fort Good Hope or the handgames event.
  • Contact their health centre or local public health unit to arrange testing only if you have symptoms.
  • Fully vaccinated means you received your final dose of vaccine at least 2 weeks before you were exposed.

Please note: Contact the health centre only if you are symptomatic and require testing or have another health concern. Do not contact the health centre for general information at this time. Further information will be shared when available.

Further OCPHO Guidance for all NWT residents

  • Avoid all gatherings in Fort Good Hope if possible at this time. The CPHO recommends no gatherings of any kind in homes or in public places. Exceptions include people caring for others in their homes or who provide regularly-scheduled childcare.
  • The CPHO recommends avoiding non-essential travel between Fort Good Hope and all other NWT communities.
  • Anyone in the NWT with symptoms of COVID-19 should be tested, even if they did not travel to Fort Good Hope.
  • CPHO recommends indoor masking in all indoor public places across the NWT.

Updates

The CPHO will issue further public health measures as the assessment continues.

What you can do

Sticking to the healthy habits we know work to stop COVID-19 will also help you take some control of your risk.

  • Self-isolate whenever required
  • Prioritize physical distancing of at least six feet (2 metres)
  • If you’re feeling even a little sick, stay home,
  • Call your health centre or public health unit at the first sign of any sickness to get tested for COVID-19
  • Wash your hands frequently
  • Keep coughs and sneezes to yourself

Attribution

All commentary is to be attributed to Dr. Kami Kandola, Chief Public Health Officer for the NWT.

Relevant links

Media Contact

Dawn Ostrem

Manager, COVID Communications

COVID-19 Coordinating Secretariat

Department of Health and Social Services

Government of the Northwest Territories

dawn_ostrem@gov.nt.ca(link sends e-mail)

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