Yukon confirms 6 new cases of COVID-19, community transmission not ruled out yet

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Yukon's Chief Medical Officer of Health Dr. Brendan Hanley announced six new cases of COVID-19 in the territory on Monday morning.

This brings Yukon's total case count to 38, with 23 recovered and one death.

In a news conference Monday morning, Hanley said that since Saturday, six additional cases have been confirmed, and that "information is literally changing by the hour."

"14 confirmed cases and two additional probable cases have been identified in Yukon since November 9th," he said.

On Saturday, the Yukon government confirmed three new cases of COVID-19 in the territory.

Two of those cases were linked to previous ones, while another is related to out-of-territory travel, according to a news release.

Five of the new cases announced on Monday are linked to a previous case while one is still under investigation.

Cases 35 and 36 were being investigated Monday after the government was made aware of them on Sunday evening, Hanley said. The territory was made aware of cases 37 and 38 on Monday morning, Hanley said.

"We are expecting that we will see more to come," said Hanley. He said officials are investigating how all the recent cases may be connected.

"We have not yet ruled out community transmission, but at the same time we see no evidence of community transmission," said Hanley, with each of the cases seemingly linked to travel or existing clusters.

The age range of cases is from under 10 years, to over 60 years old, said Hanley.

Drive-thru testing now available

On Monday, Hanley also announced that drive-thru COVID-19 testing opened on Sunday in Whitehorse, and will be available until Saturday, Nov. 28.

The drive-thru is located at Centennial Motors, 91628 Alaska Highway, in the wash bay.

Elyn Jones/CBC
Elyn Jones/CBC

The service will be available for one week from 8:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m and it will be used for people with COVID-19 symptoms, "to meet the increased demand."

Over the weekend, the territory also expanded a public exposure notice for a Whitehorse fitness centre. Anyone who was at Better Bodies on Nov. 16 between 5 a.m. and 7 a.m. and is experiencing symptoms should call the COVID-19 testing centre in Whitehorse at 867-393-3083, or contact the health centre in their community.

On Friday, the territory issued a similar exposure notice for the fitness centre for anyone who was there on Nov. 14 between 12 p.m. and 2:30 p.m.