Nfld. & Labrador

Vale reports presumptive positive COVID-19 case at Voisey's Bay mine

According to a statement from Vale Saturday morning, an asymptomatic individual entered the site on Monday and started showing symptoms on Wednesday.

Person tested positive Friday, is now in isolation

Vale is reporting a presumptive positive case of COVID-19 at its Voisey's Bay mine site in northern Labrador. (Vale)

Vale is reporting a presumptive positive case of COVID-19 at its Voisey's Bay mine site in northern Labrador, with the Department of Health doing additional testing to confirm the result.

In a statement to CBC News on Saturday, a spokesperson for the company, which owns the mine, said an asymptomatic person entered the site Monday, passed all normal screening protocols and began showing symptoms of the virus on Wednesday, when they were placed into isolation.

A subsequent test Friday returned a presumptive positive result. The case is considered presumptive until it can be confirmed by public health.

Vale said it is working with public health officials to determine the number of close contacts.

The statement from the company said the individual who tested positive remains in isolation and is doing well, with the on-site medical team providing assistance.

According to Saturday's COVID-19 news release from the provincial Health Department, the man is between 20 and 39 years old and is a resident of Newfoundland and Labrador.

The Nunatsiavut government also issued a statement Saturday morning and said it was informed by Vale of the presumptive positive case. Nunatsiavut said the risk to its beneficiaries is believed to be low.

The Health Department said public health officials met with the company Saturday morning, and additional testing will be done at the Public Health Microbiology Laboratory to confirm the positive case.

 As a result of the case being a presumptive positive, it is not being counted in the province's active caseload, which is three.

In all, 52,445 people have been tested across the province for COVID-19, including 300 tests in the last 24 hours.

The province's total COVID-19 caseload remains 291, with 284 people recovering since March.

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