The Nunavut department of health is sending a rapid response team to a mine after reporting seven presumptive COVID-19 cases on Monday.
The cases are all at TMAC Resources’ Hope Bay Mine, approximately 125 kilometres southwest of Cambridge Bay.
The tests are being sent to a southern lab, and if confirmed, will count as Nunavut’s first active COVID cases, a press release reads.
The presumptive positive cases, and all known contacts, are isolating and contact tracing is ongoing.
The presumptive cases come in addition to two other confirmed COVID cases at the mine.
However, the release says there is no established link between these new presumptive cases and the previous confirmed ones.
But health officials believe there is transmission of COVID-19 at the mine and as a result are sending in a rapid response team.
This includes two nurses and additional support to trace and contain the virus, the release says.
Additionally, all non-essential travel to and from the mine, including scheduled shift changes are cancelled until further notice.
George Hickes, minister of health, says there are no Nunavut residents working at the Hope Bay Mine currently, and the site is isolated from all Nunavut communities.
The situation will not affect Nunavut’s travel bubble with the Northwest Territories.