COVID-19 GN Update - June 22, 2020

June 22, 2020

Premier’s Update:

Good morning. There are still no confirmed or probable cases of COVID-19 in Nunavut.

The total number of people under investigation to date is 1345. 139 people are currently under investigation.

Today is the first day that restaurants, bars, hairdressers, personal service providers, churches and theatres can re-open. I know we are all excited to have some normalcy back after three long months.

Enjoy your meal out, get that hair cut, spend some time with friends and family outside your homes. But please remember – physical distancing, lots of handwashing and staying home if you feel even the littlest bit sick are still expected.

Thanks to all Nunavummiut for their hard work so far. I know it hasn’t been easy. Please continue to follow the public health advice and measures, and let’s enjoy the summer, now that’s it officially started!

 

Chief Public Health Officer update

Good morning.

As of today, Nunavut is resuming regular medical travel to Churchill, Manitoba. As Churchill has not had a confirmed case of COVID-19 since the onset of the pandemic, we have determined that the risk of resuming medical travel operations is minimal, and it is greatly outweighed by the benefits of ensuring that Nunavummiut have access to the out-of-territory care they need.

Medical travellers and their escorts who travel to Churchill for treatment and do not leave the community for the duration of their stay, will be able to return directly to Nunavut without needing to isolate at a GN designated isolation facility. If the situation changes, we will re-assess and be ready to initiate contact tracing and containment measures immediately.

We have also had some inquiries from cab companies regarding their operations. Under the new Order Regarding Social Distancing and Gatherings, cab companies can collect fares from multiple households at once, under specific conditions.

  • Whenever there are multiple passengers in the cab, everyone must wear a mask.
  • Cab drivers must provide masks for riders who do not have them.
  • Most importantly, cab drivers must obtain consent from all passengers before picking up multiple fares. This means that any passenger who is picked up, and all subsequent fares on that ride, must indicate that they are okay with riding in a shared cab with others.
  • All passengers can still request that they do not share their ride with others, and, for now, cab companies must comply with this request.

We want to thank all cab companies who have so readily complied with recommendations to limit passenger travel and enhance sanitation procedures in order to keep Nunavummiut safe and healthy.

Finally, as restaurants, bars, and other indoor locations are permitted to open, I want to continue to emphasize to Nunavummiut the necessity of social distancing, good hand hygiene, and staying home when we are sick. We need to remember, even as we return to the activities we enjoy, that this pandemic is far from over, and small actions from everyone today add up to major impacts tomorrow.

Thank you.

 

As part of the Government of Nunavut’s (GN) effort to protect Nunavummiut against the risk of COVID-19, GN Departments are implementing the following:

Department of Health Services

Calling Ahead at Health Centres

Unless you are experiencing a medical emergency, please call your health centre first before going in. Describe your symptoms, and health care providers can conduct a telephone assessment and may schedule in-person appointments for appropriate care.

Wearing Masks at Health Centres

If you are presenting at a health centre with respiratory symptoms like coughing, sneezing, or a runny nose, please wear a mask. If you do not have a mask, please tell whoever receives you at the health centre of your symptoms, and they can provide you with one.

New Email for Travellers

A new email address has been established for Nunavummiut planning travel outside of the territory. All travellers must submit an Isolation Reservation Request Form to NUisolationreservations@nunavutcare.ca as soon as travel plans are known to ensure that the travel team can identify room availability and reserve stays in a designated isolation facility. More information can be found on the Department of Health website.

Isolation sites concern inbox

A new email address has been established to better address concerns and comments from clients completing 14-day isolation in the Isolation Sites in Southern Canada. The new email will take pressure off the COVID toll free line, patient relations and the CPHOTravelRequests inbox. The new email address is isolationrelations@gov.nu.ca.

Volumes

Total (All Isolation Locations)

Traveler Type

Guests in Isolation as of June 21

Medical Travel

260

Public

174

Students

0

Total

434

 

Traveller repatriation summary:

Departure Date

# of Travellers from Isolation Sites

June 22

50

June 23

26

June 24

25



Critical Worker Requests

As of June 21, there are 1,726 requests, 1,282 of which are critical worker requests.

Request Status

#

%

Approved (includes critical and non-critical)

1511

87.5%

Denied

191

11.1%

Pending

4

0.2%

Common Travel Area Approved

20

1.2%

Total

1726

100%



Ongoing services:

Access to health care services will remain available in all communities seven days a week. All non-urgent requests will be triaged daily. Immediate access to urgent and emergent health care services are and will continue to be available 24 hours a day, seven days a week. All clients are asked to call before presenting at a health facility.

Beginning June 8, there will be an increased availability of in-person health assessments at health centres across the territory.

  • In Iqaluit, public health, the emergency room and inpatient unit will remain open.
  • Well baby clinics, prenatal visits and immunizations are continuing across Nunavut.
  • Physicians will continue community visits. If this is not possible, the visits will be conducted by telehealth or by phone.
  • Lab and Diagnostic Imaging services at QGH have resumed regular services

Adjusted services:

Appointments at health facilities are being triaged, this means the appointment may be over the phone or in person.

Medical travel services have been reduced to urgent medical travel only. Clients will be advised of these changes and involved in discussions.

In Iqaluit, outpatient clinics and rehab are triaging all appointments and conducting appointments. All upcoming appointments are being triaged.

The inpatient ward at QGH is allowing limited visitors to the inpatient ward following a questionnaire.

MHA has moved to telephone check in and support for some clients. Scheduled appointments for medication pick up and administration remain the same. If you are in crisis, present to the health centre. Home visits to administer medications will be treated on a case by case basis.

Beginning June 15, normal dental services are permitted to resume, though this service may not be available in all communities immediately. For communities where normal service resumption is delayed, emergency services are still available.

Closed /Cancelled/Suspended services:

Speciality clinics have been cancelled. Work is underway to determine which clients can be seen by phone/virtual care.

All non-essential travel for mental health clients and families are cancelled. All non-essential travel for families visiting clients in care is cancelled.

No visitors will be allowed at long term care facilities in Nunavut – Continuing Care Centres (CCCs) and Elders’ Homes.

 

Department of Community and Government Services

Requests to enter the territory for construction related projects or to travel within the territory for construction related projects can be emailed to CPHOconstructionrequests@gov.nu.ca

Construction workers who completed isolation to date: 307

Construction workers who completed isolation as of June 22, 2020

Departure Date

Number

Destination

18-Jun-20

7

Iqaluit

18-Jun-20

1

Clyde River

18-Jun-20

1

Pond Inlet

18-Jun-20

2

Rankin Inlet

18-Jun-20

7

Arviat

20-Jun-20

5

Gjoa Haven

21-Jun-20

1

Clyde River

21-Jun-20

4

Hall Beach

21-Jun-20

1

Resolute Bay

22-Jun-20

5

Arviat

22-Jun-20

4

Rankin Inlet



GN office buildings in all communities remain closed to the public at this time. If a member of the public needs to meet with GN staff, alternate arrangements need to be made. Please call ahead of time and make an appointment.

 

Nunavummiut’s health is our shared responsibility! Remember: wash your hands and surfaces, practice social distancing, listen to the advice of health officials, and stay home if you’re sick.