N.S. assisted-living community employee tests positive for COVID-19

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An employee at an assisted-living community in Dartmouth, N.S., has tested positive for COVID-19, according to the company that owns the suites, and some residents have been placed in isolation as a precaution.

Shannex said it was informed by Public Health that a staff member at Jamieson Hall at Parkland at the Lakes tested positive.

"Based on contact tracing through public health and our occupational health and safety team, it has been determined that some resident and employee testing is required," Shannex said.

Most of the testing was done Wednesday night, with more testing Thursday morning, according to the company.

While the company does not have the testing results yet, it said it has placed some residents in isolation until it knows more. It said visitors are not allowed at this time.

"We did not make this decision lightly and are sorry we need to impose these measures during the holidays; however, the safety of those who live and work in our community is our first priority," the release said. "We will be arranging safe visits for those residents on isolation at Jamieson Hall and their families through window visits and virtual calls."

Seven new cases

Nova Scotia also reported seven new cases of COVID-19 on Christmas Eve.

Of the new cases Thursday, six were in the central health zone and one was in the western health zone. Two of the cases in the central zone, along with the case in the western zone, are related to close contacts of previously reported cases. One central zone case is related to travel and the other three are under investigation.

One of the cases in the central zone is in another province or territory, but the person is a Nova Scotia resident and is included in the data, the province said.

There are now 36 active cases of COVID-19 in Nova Scotia, although the province did not say in a news release if that includes the handful of out-of-province cases reported this week. Nova Scotia Health Authority labs processed 1,340 cases on Wednesday.

New exposures in central health zone

The Nova Scotia Health Authority released a number of new potential exposure sites to COVID-19 in the central health zone on Thursday.

Anyone who worked or visited the following locations on the specified dates is asked to immediately book a test using the province's self-assessment website or contact 811 to arrange for COVID-19 testing, regardless of whether they have COVID-19 symptoms:

  • Giant Tiger at 1658 Bedford Hwy., Bedford, on Dec. 16 between 9:30 a.m. and 1:30 p.m. Symptoms may develop up to, and including, Dec. 30.

  • Lululemon at 5445 Spring Garden Rd., Halifax, on Dec. 16 between 6 p.m. and 8:30 p.m. Symptoms may develop up to, and including, Dec. 30.

  • Shoppers Drug Mart Cole Harbour at 4 Forest Hills Pkwy., Dartmouth, on Dec. 18 between 6:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. Symptoms may develop up to, and including, Jan. 1.

  • Canadian Tire Dartmouth Crossing at 30 Lamont Terrace, Dartmouth, on Dec. 18 between 5 p.m. and 8:00 p.m. Symptoms may develop up to, and including, Jan. 1.

  • Pet Smart Dartmouth Crossing at 65 Countryview Dr., Dartmouth on Dec. 20 between 1 p.m. and 4 p.m. Symptoms may develop up to, and including, Jan. 3.

  • Walmart at 6990 Mumford Rd., Halifax, on Dec. 20 between 8 and 9:30 p.m. Symptoms may develop up to, and including, Jan. 3.

  • HomeSense Dartmouth Crossing at 110 Gale Terrace, Dartmouth, on Dec. 20 between 12 p.m. and 2:30 p.m. Symptoms may develop up to, and including, Jan. 3.

  • International Paint Burnside at 250 Brownlow Ave., Dartmouth, on Dec. 21 between 9 a.m. and 11:30 a.m. Symptoms may develop up to, and including, Jan. 4.

  • Industrial Safety World Burnside at 55 Akerley Blvd., Dartmouth, on Dec. 21 between 9 a.m. and 3:30 p.m. Symptoms may develop up to, and including, Jan. 4.

  • Sobeys Cole Harbour at 2 Forest Hills Pkwy., Dartmouth, on Dec. 22 between 6 p.m. and 8:30 p.m. Symptoms may develop up to, and including, Jan. 5.

A full list of active exposures can be found here.

Celebrating Christmas safely

The province has released guidance on celebrating the holiday season as safely as possible this year.

That guidance includes not hosting or attending a gathering if you are feeling unwell, have symptoms of COVID-19, or are self-isolating.

The province is also asking people to keep gatherings small and consider the age, occupation and health conditions of a person before attending a celebration.

New household gathering limits across Nova Scotia came into effect on Monday. Gatherings must be limited to 10 people total, including household members.

While people are no longer directed to avoid the Halifax and Hants County areas, the province has advised against unnecessary travel this holiday season.

Cases in the Atlantic provinces

The latest numbers from the Atlantic provinces are:

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