April 20th, 2021

Two more COVID-19 variant cases identified in N.W.T.

By The Canadian Press on April 8, 2021.

The SARS-CoV-2 virus particles, which cause COVID-19, isolated from a patient in the U.S., emerging from the surface of cells cultured in a lab in a 2020 electron microscope image provided by the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases - Rocky Mountain Laboratories. Two recently announced COVID-19 infections in the Northwest Territories have been identified as the B.1.1.7 variant first identified in the United Kingdom. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP-HO-NIAID-RML, *MANDATORY CREDIT*

YELLOWKNIFE – The Northwest Territories says two recently announced infections have been identified as the COVID-19 variant first identified in the United Kingdom.

The cases include an out-of-territory worker at the Diavik Diamond Mine, 300 kilometres northeast of Yellowknife, and a N.W.T. resident in Yellowknife.

The territory’s chief public health officer, Dr. Kami Kandola, says the infected people and contacts are doing well and there is no risk to the public at this time.

She says the Yellowknife case is related to international travel and the individual was tested upon returning to Canada.

Kandola also says her office is working with the mine to safely return local and out-of-territory workers home, and all workers on site will be tested.

Last week, the territory identified its first variant case – another out-of-territory worker at the same mine.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published April 8, 2021.

Note to readers: This is a corrected story. A previous version said the variant cases were the first in the territory.

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