Moncton region COVID cases with no travel link have Russell worried

·2 min read

The province’s Chief Medical Officer Doctor Jennifer Russell says she remains worried about Zone 1, the Moncton region, where the more contagious U.K. variant is circulating.

In Zone 1, which stretches across southeastern New Brunswick, the risks will remain high due to its proximity to Nova Scotia, as long as Nova Scotia is still seeing high case numbers, she said.

On Monday, she cited a concern at a COVID-19 news conference about cases not linked to travel, and on Thursday said still no link to travel has been identified by Public Health.

“We had three different workplace settings that were impacted,” she said.

The fact that Public Health has not been able to identify where multiple index cases got COVID from remains problematic, she said.

“The continued ongoing transmission is being stopped by isolation,” she said.

There are 24 active cases in Moncton region, according to the province’s COVID-19 dashboard.

There is some good news for Zone 1, she said. “Leading up until today, we have really good testing numbers in Moncton,and I’d love to see them stay as high as we can.”

An RCMP investigation into a reported shooting at Centennial Park shut down the Moncton Coliseum, a major testing site in Moncton region, Russell said, and Thursday's testing numbers were expected to drop as a result.

There have been 96,390 tests conducted in the Moncton region since the start of the pandemic.

Russell is encouraging anyone with symptoms or anyone who has been to any of the potential exposure locations to get tested.

Russell said two cases in New Brunswick have been traced back to the Nova Scotia outbreak.

Russell also expressed concern about Zone 3 (Fredericton region) where the India variant is circulating and where there is now a long list of exposure notifications.

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Potential exposure sites in Moncton region:

Added to the province's list of potential exposure sites in the Moncton region as of Monday are:

• May 7: between 11 a.m. and 11 p.m. – Greco Pizza (311 Acadie Blvd., Dieppe)

• May 6: between 7 and 10 p.m., – Walmart Supercentre (477 Paul St., Dieppe )

• May 5: between noon and 8 p.m., – Staples (233 Main St., Moncton )

• May 4: between 8 and 10 p.m., – Pumphouse (5 Orange Ln, Moncton)

• May 5: between 5 p.m. and 1 a.m., May 3 between 5 p.m. and 1 a.m., May 2 between 5 p.m. and 1 a.m. – Greco (120 Killam Dr., Moncton)

• May 4: between 4 and 11 p.m., – Greco (311 Acadie Blvd., Dieppe)

• May 7: between 2 and 9:30 p.m., May 6 between 2 and 4 a.m. - emergency department – Dr. Georges-L.-Dumont University Hospital Centre (330 Université Ave., Moncton)

Clara Pasieka, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Telegraph-Journal