New measures are being introduced by the GNWT that reduce self-isolation requirements for travellers who are fully vaccinated against COVID-19.
The changes include testing on the eighth day of the 14-day self-isolation period for those entering the NWT who are fully vaccinated.
If those test results are negative for COVID-19, individuals will only be required to self-monitor and wear a mask for the remainder of the 14-day timeframe and will no longer be required to self-isolate.
The announcement comes after the Office of the Chief Public Health Officer conducted an NWT-specific risk assessment.
CPHO Dr. Kami Kandola says the results conclude that shorter isolation periods can take place to mitigate broader societal and economic costs of the pandemic.
“The determining factor is that fully vaccinated persons pose a significantly reduced importation risk to the NWT, which can be further mitigated by an initial seven-day isolation period and negative COVID-19 test,” she adds.
Kandola says the self-isolation requirement changes are applicable to all fully vaccinated travellers entering the NWT under existing exemption criteria.
“This is to ensure sufficient measures are taken to mitigate any possible spread of COVID-19, including variants of concern,” she adds.
These changes will also reduce self-isolation requirements for household members of returning fully vaccinated travellers.
For fully vaccinated household members there are no initial self-isolation requirements. Non-vaccinated household members must self-isolate along with the traveller.
For non-vaccinated household members, if the person who is self-isolating after travel receives a negative test after day 8, self-isolation requirements are complete for everyone in that household.
“The NWT is in a unique situation today with our ability to take a careful, measured approach to easing public health measures and vaccinate all eligible members of our population,” says Kandola.
Fully vaccinated NWT residents returning from travel outside the territory are still required to file a self-isolation plan for 14 days.
This change to self-isolation requirements will not apply to anyone entering the NWT from international travel.