Outbreak at Ekati declared

Aerial shot of Ekati Mine. (Supplied by Dominion Diamond Mining Company).
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An outbreak has been declared at Ekati after a second confirmed case was reported. 

All the individuals are not NWT residents and are doing well and isolating.

An upcoming crew change has been delayed, with the Office of the Chief Public Health Officer (OCPHO) set to reassess the risk in 48 hours.

Two cases have been reported in the past week, with one having been reported earlier this month.

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There was also one confirmed case of COVID-19 reported at Diavik. That individual was also a non-NWT resident.

With these cases, the number of non-NWT residents who have contracted COVID-19 in the territory increases to 38.

There is now only one active case in Yellowknife. The Office of the Chief Public Health Officer added that the final active case connected to the N.J. Macpherson school should have recovered by today.

With the winding down of the outbreak in Yellowknife, some of the restrictions imposed at the height of the outbreak are also being pushed back.

The OCPHO is no longer recommending against non-essential travel in and out of Yellowknife, Dettah and Ndilǫ, and Behchokǫ̀. 

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The mandatory masks order in public buildings in those communities will remain in place until the school year is over, due to the higher risk school students — especially elementary school students — pose of spreading the virus, because they have not had a dose of the COVID-19 vaccine.

There are currently three active cases in the territory.

There have been 121 NWT residents infected with the virus during the pandemic, as well as eight confirmed COVID-19 cases in NWT residents living outside of the territory.

Combined with the 38 non-NWT residents, that’s 167 total confirmed COVID-19 cases connected to the NWT.

Correction notice: A previous version of this article reported there was one new COVID-19 case in Yellowknife. There was actually one active case in Yellowknife, connected to the N.J. Macpherson outbreak. That case has since recovered. We apologize for the error.

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