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Investigation continues into possible hidden community transmission in Arviat

19 September 2021


Investigation continues into possible hidden community transmission in Arviat

Iqaluit, Nunavut (September 19, 2021) – Dr. Michael Patterson, Nunavut’s Chief Public Health Officer, today released the following statement:

“The presumptive positive case of COVID-19 identified by the IDNow Point of Care test, tested negative at the lab in Rankin Inlet late evening on September 17. Because the confirmatory swab was taken towards the end of the infectious period, it is not possible to confirm that the IDNow test was a false positive. In order to rule out potential hidden transmission in Arviat, further testing and investigation is needed to rule out any hidden COVID-19 transmission in the community.

Until the work is completed and we can determine the risk of a COVID-19 outbreak in Arviat is low, we will maintain the majority of public health measures in place. To ensure continuity of learning schools and childcare facilities may open with masks mandatory.
I realize that this news might be frustrating, but I urge Aviarmiut to co-operate with public health measures and I thank them for their patience. This will help ensure there isn’t COVID-19 in the community.

As a reminder, travel in and out of Arviat is not recommended at this time. Anyone who left Arviat on or after September 6, and is not fully vaccinated, is asked to isolate for 14 days from when they left Arviat. If you develop symptoms, please call Nunavut’s COVID-19 hotline at 1-888-975-8601. If you are fully vaccinated, you do not have to isolate, but you should wear a mask for 14 days from when you left Arviat.

I encourage everyone to continue following public health measure, wash your hands frequently, stay home when sick. Also, get if you are eligible, get vaccinated. The vaccine is the best protection against COVID-19.”


Media Contact:

Chris Puglia
Acting Manager of Communications
Department of Health