COVID-19 on P.E.I.: What's happening the week of Sept. 13

·3 min read
P.E.I. Chief Public Health Officer Dr. Heather Morrison and Premier Dennis King announced a return to mandatory masks in indoor, public spaces. (Ken Linton/CBC - image credit)
P.E.I. Chief Public Health Officer Dr. Heather Morrison and Premier Dennis King announced a return to mandatory masks in indoor, public spaces. (Ken Linton/CBC - image credit)

Public health measures prompted by the recent outbreak at Charlottetown's West Royalty Elementary come into effect Friday. Indoor public-space mask requirements are back, and personal gathering limits will be lowered to 20 people.

Charlottetown students headed back to school Thursday after classes in the area were suspended for three days due to the outbreak. All the province's schools will be moving back to cohorting, and masking will be required for students in Grades four through 12.

CUPE P.E.I. says it would be in favour of COVID-19 testing measures similar to those in place for staff in long-term care facilities being implemented for school-system workers. But the union also wants the way the tests are taken to be modified to protect members' privacy.

P.E.I. announced 10 cases of COVID-19 Thursday, nine of which are related to the outbreak at West Royalty. One of the related cases is a student at École La-Belle-Cloche in Souris, which will be closed Friday for contact tracing.

In the meantime, West Royalty is set to reopen Monday. A pop-up testing clinic will be set up for the school's students and staff Friday.

Before the government announced the changes, Liberal MLAs came out in favour of a return to masking.

Five new cases were reported Wednesday, four of which were in close contact to previously announced cases at the school.

Some parents are expressing concern, others relief, about the return to school plan. Here's how schools are adapting so far to the situation.

Steve Bruce/CBC
Steve Bruce/CBC

The West Royalty outbreak has led to cancellations beyond the education system.

Islanders with compromised immune systems are being offered a third dose of COVID-19 vaccine.

As Charlottetown schools were shut down, some child care centres say they would have liked more guidance about how they should respond.

P.E.I.'s Chief Public Health Officer is encouraging staff and students at Charlottetown Rural high school who are not fully vaccinated against COVID-19 to get tested.

P.E.I. Premier Dennis King says he is happy with the air quality in Island schools, but Green Leader Peter Bevan-Baker says that is just one area where government efforts to protect children from COVID-19 are lacking.

Potential COVID-19 exposure sites

There are currently 37 active cases of COVID-19, the highest since the pandemic began.

As of Saturday, Sept. 11, 92.2 per cent of eligible Island residents had received at least one dose of vaccine and 83.7 per cent had received two doses.

COVID-19 cases on P.E.I.

Elsewhere in Atlantic Canada

Also in the news

These Islanders are currently eligible for a vaccine

  • People over 12.

  • Islanders over 18 can book an appointment to receive the vaccine at a pharmacy.

Further resources

Reminder about symptoms

The symptoms of COVID-19 can include:

  • Fever.

  • Cough or worsening of a previous cough.

  • Possible loss of taste and/or smell.

  • Sore throat.

  • New or worsening fatigue.

  • Headache.

  • Shortness of breath.

  • Runny nose.

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