Possible Omicron case under investigation at Sudbury's Laurentian University

Sudbury’s Laurentian University says there has been a positive case of the Omicron COVID-19 variant on campus, but public health says it has not yet confirmed whether the case is indeed Omicron.

The university has rescheduled in-person exams on Friday, Saturday

Laurentian University said on Friday there was a positive case of the Omicron COVID-19 variant on campus, but public health later clarified that it had not yet confirmed whether the variant was present in that case. (Yvon Theriault/Radio-Canada)

A suspected case of the COVID-19 Omicron variant from Sudbury's Laurentian University is under investigation.

"To date, no Omicron cases have been confirmed in public health's service area," the health unit said in an email.

But the health unit added there are "multiple persons" in the region whose COVID-19 strain is under investigation or who are waiting for confirmation as to whether they have the Omicron variant.

In an email to students, staff and faculty, Laurentian President Robert Haché said the university was notified of a positive case of the Omicron variant on campus on Dec. 16. 

But Public Health Sudbury and Districts said that case was still under investigation as of Friday afternoon, and had not yet been confirmed to be the Omicron variant.

Haché said in his email that in-person exams scheduled for Dec. 17 and 18, apart from those that already took place Friday morning, would be rescheduled to occur remotely.

Haché said the decision was made out of "an abundance of caution."

As of Thursday afternoon, the health unit confirmed there were 304 active COVID-19 cases in Sudbury and the surrounding district. It also confirmed one death due to the virus that day.

'Nerve-racking news'

"It's nerve-racking news," said Eric Chappell, the president of Laurentian's Students' General Association. "I think though, the university seems to be responding promptly and it is a developing situation here."

Chappell said he was not personally affected by the rescheduled exams, but he knows other students who were.

"Through this whole pandemic, we've had multiple situations where, you know, the handbook  feels like it's gone out the door," he said. "And you're having to adapt. I feel like this is something we've gotten used to."


  • A previous version of this story said Laurentian had a confirmed Omicron case. The story has been corrected.
    Dec 17, 2021 4:08 PM ET


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