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Single presumptive case found at Gahcho Kue mine

GK Gahcho Ku+¬ Mine_Aerial_September2016
photo courtesy DeBeers Canada Aerial photo of Gahcho Kue diamond mine. Sept. 10, 2016.

On Oct. 20 the incoming testing of employees found that there was a single presumptive Covid-19 case at Gahcho Kue Mine.

A processing plant at Gahcho Kue mine. On Oct. 20 there was a single presumptive case found at Gahcho Kue Mine. photo courtesy of DeBeers Canada

The person in question is asymptomatic and currently feeling well according to a news release by DeBeers Group.

They were placed in the quarantine wing of the mine site and out of caution there are 18 others who travelled with the individual who are also in quarantine.

“The site-based team is implementing actions in the mine's detailed pandemic response plan, including follow up of all affected personnel,” DeBeers said in the release.

The DeBeers Group added they are working with the Chief Public Health Officer (CPHO) of the NWT.

In another news release by the Office of the CPHO (OCPHO) added that the individual was a Yellowknife resident and that household members and close contacts were quickly informed to isolate and was given additional advice from public health.

"An aggressive contact investigation has been initiated and every possible step is being taken to minimize risk to our communities," stated Mike Westwick, Manager of Communications (COVID-19 Response) in the OCPHO release.

They added that NWT public health officials are working closely with the medical staff at the mine to guide further actions, such as validating the presumptive test.

The OCPHO also reiterated that it is still a presumptive positive test, meaning it has to still be confirmed by a public health laboratory.

They had also stressed the importance of practicing routine public health precautions which will help keep you and others safer such as:

• Prioritize physical distance of at least six feet, or two metres
• Wear a non-medical mask when keeping distance is difficult
• Keep crowds small and spaces large to reduce the risk of transmission
• Frequently washing your hands with soap and water or hand sanitizer
• Please maintain self-isolation if you are required to.
• Stay home if you’re feeling sick – even if your symptoms are mild
• If you develop any symptoms, contact your local healthcare centre to be assessed for COVID-19.