Indigenous

COVID-19 in Indigenous communities: What you need to know

The total number of hospitalizations for people on First Nations due to COVID-19 has increased by 39 since Jan. 26, and there have been nine more deaths since last week.

9 more deaths due to COVID-19 reported among First Nations

Members of the Tsleil-Waututh Nation sit shortly after getting COVID-19 vaccinations in March 2021. (Ben Nelms/CBC)

The total number of hospitalizations for people on First Nations due to COVID-19 has increased by 39 since Jan. 26, and there have been nine more deaths since last week.

Indigenous Services Canada (ISC) said as of Feb. 1, there had been a total of 2,624 hospitalizations in First Nations communities due to COVID-19, and 608 deaths.

According to data from ISC, there were 4,872 active cases of COVID-19 reported in First Nations as of Feb.1. This is down from the 5,509 active cases reported as of Jan. 26. Case numbers may be understated as some provinces are now limiting access to PCR tests. 

To date, ISC is aware of a total of 7,946 cases in First Nations communities due to the Omicron variant: 4,879 in Eastern Canada and 3,067 in Western Canada. A total of 126 First Nations have reported cases of the strain.

The Government of Nunavut said as of Feb. 1, there were 462 active cases of COVID-19 in 18 communities. 

To date, there have been 1,820 confirmed cases in Nunavut, 1,353 total recovered cases and five deaths. Nunavut says 25,925 people have received at least two vaccine doses.

Total cumulative COVID-19 case numbers in First Nations per region:

British Columbia 7,637

Alberta: 17,521

Saskatchewan: 15,193

Manitoba: 18,071

Ontario: 8,295

Quebec: 5,850

Atlantic: 1,604

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What are the symptoms of COVID-19? 

  • New or worsening cough.

  • Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing.

  • Temperature equal to or over 38 C.

  • Feeling feverish.

  • Chills.

  • Fatigue or weakness.

  • Muscle or body aches.

  • New loss of smell or taste.

  • Headache.

  • Abdominal pain, diarrhea, vomiting.

  • Feeling very unwell.

If you think you might have COVID-19, please consult your local health department to book an appointment at a screening clinic.

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