COVID-19 detected in Iqaluit after months without new cases

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Downtown Iqaluit, Nunavut on Nov. 24, 2020. Public health officials have confirmed a case of COVID-19 in the city, after months without any cases. (Emma Tranter/The Canadian Press - image credit)
Downtown Iqaluit, Nunavut on Nov. 24, 2020. Public health officials have confirmed a case of COVID-19 in the city, after months without any cases. (Emma Tranter/The Canadian Press - image credit)

After months without any new COVID-19 cases in Iqaluit, public health officials in Nunavut have confirmed a single case of COVID-19 in the capital city and have issued a public exposure notice.

The case, according to a government media release, was detected Friday in a person who had recently returned from travel in southern Canada.

"The risk for transmission is considered low, and there is no need to increase public health measures at this time," said Dr. Michael Patterson, the territory's chief public health officer.

The individual is isolating and contract tracing is underway, he noted.

A public exposure notice has been issued for a Canadian North flight from Ottawa to Iqaluit on Dec. 2. Health officials say people aboard Flight 5T-103, seated in rows 21 to 27, should isolate until Dec. 16 if they're not vaccinated, and should monitor for symptoms until the same date if they are vaccinated.

Public health said the positive sample has been sent to a lab in southern Canada to determine if it's a case of the Omicron variant.

The last time public health reported a new case in Iqaluit was on Sept. 13.

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