The rapid antigen capacity within the Northwest Territories remains limited as federal government provided tests are still waiting in the wings, as well as testing being prioritized for specific personal.

“We have a limited supply for providing rapid antigen tests, as well as a limited capacity within the system to test everyone who wishes to receive a test at our health centres,” Dr. Kami Kandola, chief public health officer, said.

“Testing must be reserved to target strategic groups,” she continued.

Such groups include clinic management (those who are sick or high risk), children under the age of five and returning travellers.

A range of around 20,000 tests have been coming into the territory, but according to Dr. AnneMarie Pegg, territorial medical director, distribution (as mentioned by Kandola) is something that cannot occur at this given time.

“As has been mentioned by a number of people, there does need to be a prioritization of the the greatest yield for the utilization of those tests and handing them out,” said Pegg. “Unfortunately, at this point, everybody who is interested, while we would really love to do that, that’s that’s not something that’s that’s possible right now.”

Also, focusing on the 140 million rapid test distribution announcement that came out of the federal government, these do not yet have a “where and when” for their arrival, according to health minister Julie Green.

“I meet weekly with the federal, provincial, and territorial health ministers,” said Green. “While the federal government is doing its best to round up and increase supply tests, the 140 million tests announcement last week doesn’t have key details, such as, where and when the tests are coming to us.”

“We know that we’re going to get a per capita allotment,” she continued.

Regarding other Covid protocols brought forward by Kandola, the implementation of containment orders in communities is not being looked at this time.

As well, according to Kandola, schools are only to be closed to in-person learning “as long as necessary.”

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