An individual diagnosed with a presumptive case of Covid-19 in Inuvik developed symptoms after voluntarily going into isolation Oct. 10 and there is no risk of infection from them.
Deputy chief public health officer Dr. Andy Delli Pizzi clarified the timeline to Inuvik Drum following a press conference held in Yellowknife Oct. 16.
“They went into isolation, and then sought care when they developed symptoms,” he said. “Based on all the details they provided about their travels, we felt there was no exposure to the communities.”
The case is still considered presumptive – follow up tests are being done in Edmonton to determine if the symptoms are in fact from Covid-19 or something else.
Current research on Covid-19 shows that the virus is at its most contagious up to two days prior to when symptoms appear. Because the individual developed symptoms after going into isolation, Dr. Delli Pizzi said there was no danger of being infected for people the individual may have met along the journey.
Dr. Delli Pizzi would not confirm if the individual lived alone or with other people, but said if there were other people living with the presumptive patient would also have been advised to go into self-isolation for 14 days.
A public health advisory published Oct. 16 said the individual traveled to Inuvik from Alberta by road, meaning they would have crossed three borders on the nearly 3,000 kilometre drive to the Alberta border.
Dr. Delli Pizzi said in this case protocols were followed properly and credited the patient for following the right steps to ensure the virus did not get spread.
“It can sometimes be a burden to follow these protocols, but when we all do them the best that we can, it’s very protective,” he said. “We can very clearly say people followed the protocols as best they could and its very protective to Inuvik and the communities they traveled through.”