A COVID-19 positive NWT resident who travelled to an undisclosed community before developing symptoms is currently in stable condition at Yellowknife’s Stanton Territorial Hospital, Premier Caroline Cochrane confirmed to NNSL Media on Friday.
In a news release issued Thursday night, the territory’s chief public health officer said the individual, who had been travelling in Canada, returned to the community on March 22 and submitted a self-isolation plan. The person developed symptoms four days later.
Cochrane said it’s her understanding that the person, now hospitalized, didn’t follow mandatory orders for returning travellers to self-isolate in Yellowknife, Hay River, Fort Smith or Inuvik – “isolation centres” meant to halt the spread of COVID-19 throughout the territory, according to health officials.
“We are conducting an investigation to determine all the circumstances with the individual. The investigation is ongoing,” said Cochrane.
“The manner by which they were able to return to a small community and not a designated isolation centre is being investigated,” stated Dr. Kami Kandola stated on Thursday night.
Kandola won’t be releasing the name of the community where the individual returned to.
“The individual lives alone, they were tested in a car. There was no scenario where that person encountered others. So again, the public health investigation is ongoing. In a scenario where we feel the public was not exposed, naming the community is not going to give us additional information for this public health investigation,” she told CBC North Friday.
There are four confirmed COVID-19 cases in the NWT.
It was also announced last night that an individual who had recently returned to Yellowknife from Europe on March 20 had tested positive. The person is self-isolating and recovering at home, according to health officials.
More to come.