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COVID-19 GN Update - April 23, 2021

23 April 2021

Premier’s update:

Today, we are reporting nine new cases and eight recoveries of COVID-19 in Nunavut. There are 37 active cases in the territory - 33 in Iqaluit and four in Kinngait.

To date,14,915 Nunavummiut have received their first dose of the Moderna vaccine, and 11,940 Nunavummiut are now fully vaccinated.

I’d like to thank all Nunavummiut for their continued efforts and patience. It has been a very long, hard year and unfortunately, we’re still going at it. But I know we can do this.

We need to look to the longer-term and know what our responsibilities are to one another. COVID fatigue is real, but boredom is not an excuse to take unnecessary chances.

It’s another weekend with tight restrictions for the Qikiqtani and Rankin Inlet. Please do your part, and please don’t take chances.

Reach out if you need to, stay connected from afar and know that we appreciate your sacrifices.

As always, I’ll end with this - Mask up. Wash your hands. Keep at least six feet distance from others when you’re outside. Stay home as much as possible. Get vaccinated.

Take care and stay safe.


Minister of Health Update:

Today, I’d like to speak very briefly about the importance of the COVID vaccine.

As we continue to offer the Moderna vaccine in communities across the territory, I think it’s important to remind everyone that the vaccine is safe, effective, quick and our very best defense in the fight against the virus.

If you have questions about the vaccine, call your health centre, or visit the Government of Nunavut or Government of Canada websites. All the facts and answers are easily available.

But please, don’t assume that theories on the internet or something you heard from a friend of a friends through social media is accurate. Take the time to research and understand the benefits. Because science is real and this vaccine works.

Being worried or scared is normal, and there are potential, short-term side effects. But they are minimal and pass quickly.

The pros outweigh the cons and this pandemic is too serious not to do what we can.

Nunavummiut, make an appointment if you haven’t already. The vaccines are here and available. Now we need you to do your part.  


Chief Public Health Officer Update:

Good morning,

Today, we have 7 new cases of COVID-19 in Iqaluit and 2 new cases in Kinngait, there are also 8 individuals in Iqaluit who have recovered.

Given the current situation, I am supportive of the decision of the organizers of the Nunavut Quest dogsled race to cancel the event scheduled for April 26.

I realize that this is an event with cultural significance and one the communities involved were looking forward to. However, given the current risk, the organizers have made a decision that reduces the risk of introducing COVID-19 to multiple communities.

I know the pandemic has resulted in the cancellation of many annual and traditional events and activities. This is not easy on any of us, but with the help of all Nunavummiut, through following the public health measures and getting vaccinated, we will get through this.

Following two exposure notices in bars, we have also decided to alter public health measures as they pertain to licensed establishments across the territory. As of Monday, when licensed establishments, such as bars and clubs, and restaurants are open, they will be restricted to 50% capacity. In Kinngait and Iqaluit, these facilities are limited to take out service.

Finally, this afternoon, residents of Iqaluit might notice Iqaluit Public Health doing COVID-19 swabs at the Cadet Hall. This is surveillance testing that has been setup to aid Iqaluit Public Health in its effort to test those who have been advised to be tested and have an appointment. It will allow us to do more swabs, get results faster and expand our reach into lower risk contacts.

Do not go to this location for swabbing if you do not have an appointment. If you believe you have been exposed to COVID-19, call the hotline at 1-888-975-8601. Those under isolation will continue to have a nurse go to them for swabbing. This is not a public testing site.

Also, if you see people you know in the line, do not assume they have COVID. Testing is an important tool to track the virus and only works if people cooperate and stigma and shame hurt those efforts.

Thank you.



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

For all the latest information and resources about COVID-19 in Nunavut, go to:

For the latest information on current public health restrictions, go to:

For information on upcoming vaccine clinics go to:


COVID-19 case status: April 23

Total Tests Total confirmed cases Total active cases Total recovered cases Deaths Total persons followed Current persons followed
10,959 441 37 400 4 7,493 254

* Confirmed cases include those meeting the national case definitions. Persons followed includes individuals with specific symptoms and exposures as well as others who are self-monitoring or self-isolated. Not all of these individuals have symptoms or require testing.

*There may be a delay reporting attribution and statistics from cases acquired in Southern Canada. 12 cases that were detected out of territory have been attributed to Nunavut. This includes 3 deaths. Not all NU residents with COVID-19 detected out of territory will be attributed to Nunavut.

COVID-19 community case statistics: April 23

Community Confirmed COVID-19 cases yesterday Confirmed COVID-19 cases today Change in case count +/- from previous day Deaths Recovered Cases Total active cases
Iqaluit 35 41 7 0 9 33
Kinngait 2 4 2 0 0 4
Arviat 339 339 0 1 338 0
Whale Cove 23 23 0 0 23 0
Rankin Inlet 19 19 0 0 19 0
Sanikiluaq 2 2 0 0 2 0
TOTAL  420 429 9 1 391 37

COVID-19 vaccination status: April 23

First doses administered Second doses administered Total vaccine doses administered
14,915 11,940 26,855

*Total vaccine administered is updated as regularly as possible but might be lower than actual count.

Testing stats to date: April 23

Community Tests Positive Tests Negative
Iqaluit 42 449
Kinngait 4 31
Arviat 339 2,883
Whale Cove 23 352
Rankin Inlet 19 399
Sanikiluaq 2 202
TOTAL  429 4316

Isolation population: 

Traveler Type Guests in Isolation as of April 23
Medical 70
Public  21
Construction 2
Total 143

Traveller repatriation summary:

Departure Date # of Travellers from Health Isolation Sites
April 23, 2021 73
April 24, 2021 10
April 25, 2021 38
April 26, 2021 43
April 27, 2021 57
Total 221

Critical Worker Requests:

As of April 22, there were 15,368 requests, 7,648 of which were critical worker requests.

Request Status # %
Approved (includes critical and non-critical) 11,613 75.6%
Denied 307 2.0%
Pending 521 3.4%
Common Travel Area 2927 19.0%
Total 15,368 100%


Iqaluit Mental Health and Addiction

Due to COVID-19 restrictions in Iqaluit, Iqaluit Mental Health and Addictions (Youth Wellness Team and Greenstone) are shifting their services to telephone or virtual sessions and can be accessed by calling 975-5900.  Appointments are usually made for the same day and are first-come first-serve.

Akausisarvik Day Programming will be put on hold until further notice.

Akausisarvik Outpatient services will be limited to medication support and by appointment only, following COVID protocols.

QGH mental health nurses will continue to work following COVID protocols.



Department of Education Services

New developments in your programs/ services:

K-12 Schools

All Nunavut schools have access to the Edsby web-based platform, regardless of the stage they are in. Edsby is in place to support remote learning for all schools.

If parents have questions about Edsby, they should reach out to their school’s principal.

Parents and staff should be aware that accessing Edsby may be slower than normal due to the increasing number of Nunavummiut working from home. We ask for patience when accessing Edsby.

Ongoing services:

K-12 Schools

The following stages continue to be in effect:

  • Stage 4 – Schools in Kinngait and Iqaluit
  • Stage 3 – Schools in the Qikiqtani region, except Sanikiluaq, Kinngait, and Iqaluit
  • Stage 2 – Schools in Rankin Inlet and Arviat (Arviat will change to Stage 1 on Monday, April 26, 2021)
  • Stage 1 – Schools in Sanikiluaq, the Kitikmeot region, and Kivalliq region, except for Rankin Inlet and Arviat

Schools will implement the appropriate action plan for their current stage.

Early Learning and Child Care

All Nunavut childcare facilities can remain open, with the exception of Kinngait and Iqaluit.

Financial Assistance for Nunavut Students (FANS)

Students booking their FANS-eligible travel must follow the public health measures and recommendations of the CPHO.

  • If students have questions about their travel, they can contact the FANS office for information at

Adjusted services:

K-12 Schools

As of Monday, April 26, 2021, Arviat schools will move to Stage 1.

  • In Stage 1, schools are open full-time for in-school instruction to students from Kindergarten to Grade 12, five days per week.

Closed /Cancelled/Suspended services:

K-12 Schools

Kinngait and Iqaluit schools are closed for in-school instruction until further notice.

  • In Stage 4, all instruction will be conducted remotely. All schools are closed to students, staff, and the public. School staff will regularly communicate with all students.

Early Learning and Child Care

Kinngait and Iqaluit childcare facilities are closed until further notice.



Department of Human Resources Services

Ongoing services:

Summer Student Employment Equity Program Going Ahead

The Government of Nunavut’s (GN) 2021 Summer Student Employment Equity Program (SSEEP) is going ahead.

In communities where there is COVID-19, the hiring of students will be on a case-by-case basis.

The SSEEP is designed to provide opportunities for Nunavut Inuit and Nunavummiut students to gain meaningful work experience and training with the Nunavut public service. It is an integral part of the GN’s goals to encourage continuous learning and to foster youth development.

Departmental submissions will be accepted until July 16, 2021. Summer students may work from home or in government offices, depending on the nature of the position and the public health measures in place at the time.

For program information, please visit

If you have any questions, please contact your summer student coordinator:

There’s Help

The GN encourages our employees and their family members to explore how our Employee and Family Assistance Program can help at this time. The Employee and Family Assistance Program includes a toll-free confidential phone number, 1-800-663-1142, that employees and/or their family members can call at any time to talk to a trained counsellor in any of Nunavut’s official languages, and also includes online resources and tools at



Qulliq Energy Corporation

Ongoing services:

QEC will continue to deliver safe and reliable power to Nunavummiut.

Adjusted services:

QEC will estimate monthly billing for Kinngait customers for the April 1 to 30 billing period.

Closed/Cancelled/Suspended services:

QEC Customer Care offices in Iqaluit remain closed until further notice. Iqaluit customers are being served by QEC’s Baker Lake Customer Care team by phoning 1-866-710-4200 or emailing with questions or concerns about their accounts.



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