Number of COVID-19 cases drops over weekend in N.W.T.

The number of COVID-19 cases in the N.W.T. dropped by 25 per cent over the weekend, going from 354 to 268.

Number of cases decline by about 25 per cent, from 354 on Friday to 268 on Monday

The virus that causes COVID-19, isolated from a patient. The number of COVID-19 cases dropped by a quarter in the N.W.T. over the past weekend, going from 354 to 268. (NIAID-RML/Reuters)

The number of COVID-19 cases in the N.W.T. dropped by about 25 per cent over the weekend.

Despite reporting 57 new cases since Friday, the Office of the Chief Public Health Officer said there are 268 active cases in the territory on Monday, compared to 354 on Friday.

The biggest decline was in Behchokǫ̀, where the number of cases dropped from 117 on Friday to 68 on Monday.

Yellowknife, Dettah and Ndilǫ also experienced a a big drop in the number of cases, going from 195 to 151.

The numbers confirm the downward trend Chief Public Health Officer Dr. Kami Kandola discussed during a news conference last week, on Oct. 14.

She said cases had peaked the previous week, when they reached 460 on Oct. 7.

Cases in other communities

The number of cases in Inuvik climbed over the weekend, from eight to 14. 

On Saturday, the town's homeless shelter reopened but individuals who have not been tested for COVID-19 and cleared are not allowed to stay there, the press release stated. However, the isolation centre at the Mackenzie hotel continues to accept anyone who needs a place to stay while they are waiting for test results or need a place to isolate.

In Hay River and K'atl'odeeche First Nation, cases jumped from 16 on Friday to 21 on Monday. 

Health officials issued four public exposure notices for Hay River over the weekend, including one for the Grade 5-6 class at Princess Alexandra School. Officials said students and staff have been instructed on what to do as a result of the exposure.

There are six cases being reported in Fort Simpson, the same as on Friday.

There are now only two cases in Fort Smith, compared to five on Friday. And there remains three cases in Whatì, two in Fort Good Hope and one in Łutsel Kʼe.

Exposure notices

In addition to the four exposure notices in Hay River, health officials also issued five notices in Yellowknife and one in Behchokǫ̀.

Find the full list of public exposure notices here.

Health officials also noted that Northwestern Air flight 507 from Fort Smith to Yellowknife on Oct. 4, and Northwestern Air flight 508 from Yellowknife to Fort Smith on Oct. 5, should no longer be considered exposure locations. There is no need for passengers on these flights to self-monitor for symptoms, officials said.

The N.W.T. government also said on Monday that Public Service Canada had approved its request for the Canadian Red Cross to provide "surge support to the healthcare system for Infection, Prevention Control to the N.W.T. and its local communities affected with COVID-19 outbreaks."