Marystown area in Newfoundland working hard to contain COVID-19 outbreak: mayor

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MARYSTOWN, N.L. — The mayor of a small town in Newfoundland says an outbreak of COVID-19 in his community and the surrounding area has resulted in 39 confirmed cases as of last night, with more expected to be confirmed later today.

Mayor Brian Keating says there is "an anticipation of more positives as contact tracing is ongoing" in Marystown and nearby communities located on the Burin Peninsula.

Keating says public health officials have informed municipal leaders that 974 people have been tested for the virus, and over 400 are booked for testing today in the town — which has a population of about 5,000 people.

During a briefing on Friday in St. John's, provincial Chief Medical Officer of Health Dr. Janice Fitzgerald said many of the initial cases occurred at Sacred Heart Academy in Marystown but the original source of the outbreak was under investigation.

The school has 460 students from kindergarten to Grade 7, and has been closed since Thursday due to the outbreak.

Keating says most of the community's residents have been vaccinated, though people under 20 are still receiving their doses, and he's hopeful this will help limit hospitalizations.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Oct. 24, 2021.

The Canadian Press

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