Update 5:25 p.m.: RCMP Yellowknife will continue operations, despite being listed as one of two locations in Yellowknife where there was a COVID-19 exposure risk.

Anyone who was at the Yellowknife RCMP detachment on October 13 between 11 a.m. and 11:30 a.m. may be at some risk of exposure to COVID-19, according to the GNWT.

In a statement put out late Friday afternoon, Yellowknife’s RCMP detachment said they are working with GNWT Department of Health and the Department of Justice on details of the contact tracing taking place.

The Yellowknife detachment, located on Veterans Memorial Drive, implemented a number of measures to prevent COVID-19 contamination.

These measures include limiting capacity, a double-door system that only opens when someone has been screened for COVID-19, and have masks and hand sanitizer available. A plexiglass window separates the public and the front counter staff.  The front counter staff office is separated by a door from the operating detachment area. 

“We want to assure the people of the Northwest Territories that public safety remains our focus,” Superintendent Jeff Christie, NT RCMP Criminal Operations Officer, said in a statement. “As the police of jurisdiction in the Northwest Territories, we will continue to provide policing services and will maintain operations at our RCMP Detachments.”

 

Update 2:45 p.m.: At a press conference Friday afternoon, deputy chief public health officer Dr. Andy Delli-Pizzi said people who had visited the Anytime Fitness October 12 between 3 p.m. and 4:30 p.m. and the Yellowknife RCMP detachment public waiting area on October 13 between 11 a.m. and 11:30 a.m. are at “some risk” of exposure, and must self-isolate for 14 days immediately.

Family members of anyone who may have been at risk of exposure must also self-isolate if the exposed person will be sharing a living space.

Anyone who is exposed should also contact the Yellowknife Public Health Unit at (867) 767-9120.

This would include employees who were present at the time. Delli-Pizzi said the territory was being “extra-precautionary,” and see no need to change their management of COVID-19 at this stage. But Delli-Pizzi said they would be monitoring the situation.

Confirmed results on the three presumptive cases are expected to be returned from the laboratory in Edmonton on Saturday.

Hours at the COVID-19 testing drive-through centre in Yellowknife have been expanded to 12 p.m and 4 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday.

Delli-Pizzi added if you do not have symptoms, you not have to get tested, but should remain isolated if you are at risk of exposure.

 

Three new presumptive cases of COVID-19 have been reported in the Northwest Territories, two in Yellowknife and one in Inuvik.

In a news release on Friday, the territorial government said the two Yellowknife positive tests were reported late Thursday evening. One person, who was travelling back into the territory, spread the virus to a household member.

The Inuvik case is not related to the two in Yellowknife, the territory said. That case stems from a traveller from Alberta who drove to Inuvik.

The test samples will be sent to a laboratory in Edmonton to confirm the initial results. If the tests come back positive, the cases would bring the territory’s number of identified Covid-19 patients to eight and be the first confirmed positives since April.

“The investigation is underway and further details will be made available later in the day,” deputy chief public health officer Dr. Andy Delli-Pizzi said in a statement — chief public health officer Dr. Kami Kandola is on vacation this week.

But Delli-Pizzi said there were “no concerns for exposure” from the Inuvik case, adding the driver from Alberta immediately self-isolated upon arrival, and is doing well.

“The initial assessment is that there were no potential contacts, though the investigation continues. The risk of further transmission is considered to be very low at this time since precautions were taken.

“Public health has determined there are no concerns for exposure along the route which was travelled at this time.”

 

More to come.