CPHO says Inuvik experiencing COVID community transmission

Booster shots availability was also expanded this week.

A file photo of Inuvik's Midnight Sun Complex, where this year's AGA took place. (CKLB file photo).

The territorial chief public health officer (CPHO) says there is community transmission in Inuvik as the number of COVID cases continues to increase.

“Individuals in the community have tested positive for COVID-19 with no clear identifiable path of transmission,” a press release says.

Dr. Kami Kandola, the CPHO, said all students who attended either junior kindergarten class at East Three Elementary School on Oct. 13 from 8:30 a.m. to noon must immediately self isolate and parents should arrange for testing.

Last week an outbreak was declared at both shelters in Inuvik and an isolation centre was set up at the Mackenzie Hotel for those needing to self isolate. No details were provided on whether an additional shelter will be set up for the homeless population who do not need to self isolate. 

On Friday, the CPHO said there were eight active cases in Inuvik.

There are also 195 cases in Yellowknife, Dettah and Ndilǫ, that number has continued to decline for the past week.

There are 117 cases in Behchokǫ̀, six in Fort Simpson, one in Łutsel Kʼe, two in Fort Good Hope, one in Norman Wells, five in Fort Smith, 16 in Hay River and K’atl’odeeche First Nation and three cases in Whatì.

On Friday the health and social services authority announced anyone in Yellowknife, Dettah and Ndilǫ who are fully vaccinated and 60 or older are now eligible for a booster shot of the COVID vaccine.

That expanded this week to anyone 60 or older in Hay River, Inuvik, and Fort Smith and anyone 50 or older in all other communities are also eligible for the booster shot. 

The booster shots are voluntary and at least six months must have passed since the resident received their second dose.

The booster dose contains less vaccine than a full dose.

This is currently ahead of national guidance that has only recommended booster shots for residents in longterm care homes and a full extra dose for people who are immunocompromised. However Dr. Kandola has previously stated that waning vaccines could be one of the factors contributing to the current outbreak.

About the Author

Luke Carroll
Luke Carroll is a journalist originally from Brockville, Ont. He has previously worked as a reporter and editor in Ottawa, Halifax and New Brunswick. Luke is a graduate of Carleton University's bachelor of journalism program. If you have a story idea, feel free to send him an email at luke.carroll@cklbradio.com