NW Week

Tuesday, September 26, 2023

This winter, there was no change in COVID-19 measurements in the N.W.T.

COVID-19 measurements in the N.W.T.

Key Takeaways:

  • WEDNESDAY, the N.W.T. chief public health officer reiterated that mask-wearing, gathering restrictions, and isolation requirements will not change this winter.
  • “The public health emergency would not last forever, but COVID-19 will, so people must make decisions based on that reality.”

While the territory’s fall COVID-19 outbreak has subsided, Dr. Kami Kandola said case numbers were increasing across Canada, and an expected increase in travel also gatherings made the holidays a “risky period.”

The new Omicron variant of concern, nearly which little is definitively known, is also a factor.

Instead, the N.W.T. government is launching a campaign to reinforce a “new normal” of living with COVID-19. Setting COVID-19 Safety Nets is a campaign that outlines “layers of protection” that residents can use to combat COVID-19 also assess risk when the territory’s public health emergency is lifted. Unfortunately, there is currently no schedule for this.

“At some point in the future, we will have to adjust to a time when individuals take responsibility for lowering their risk,” Kandola said.

The campaign’s main pillars conform to standard guidelines, promoting vaccination, safe travel, everyday healthy habits such as wearing a mask, staying at home if sick, and social distancing.

She emphasized the importance of assessing the risk of COVID-19 in your community while traveling and at private gatherings during the upcoming holiday season. Dr. AnneMarie Pegg, the territory’s medical director, stated that COVID-19 played a role in the current recruitment and retention crisis in the N.W.T.’s healthcare system.

“It’s critical to maintain awareness of the societal and mental consequences of this pandemic,” Pegg said.

When asked if the territory would be ready for a COVID-19 spike after the holidays, Pegg said it will depend on the number or severity of cases. The number and severity of cases determined this.

She claims that in previous outbreaks, the strain primarily affected those performing contact tracing and testing.

Pegg stated that the N.W.T. system has limitations in acute care capacity but that Alberta healthcare on which the N.W.T. relies like a backup is “somewhat in a better situation” than when the territory’s most recent COVID-19 outbreak began in August.

Source: Toronto Star

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