Gahcho Kue Case Investigation Update

News Type: 
Past COVID-19 Advisories

No indication of further transmission at this time. Likely source identified.


YELLOWKNIFE 26 October 2020 – After a rigorous investigation of potential contacts over the preceding 14 days, public health officials believe they have identified a likely source of the infection for the COVID-19 case identified at Gahcho Kue Diamond Mine.

Likely Source

The likely source was identified by public health after extensive interviews with the individual at Gahcho Kue mine site.

Through this investigation, there was only one high-risk contact identified.

Public health believes this is the likely source because this contact of the individual at Gahcho Kue Mine recently traveled outside the Northwest Territories.

Steps Taken

Public health tested the individual who was the likely source for COVID-19. The results of this test were negative, indicating that this individual was not infectious.

As the individual was tested late in the potential incubation period, this would not be uncommon.

Public health also proceeded to test those who had spent time with this individual during the potential infectious period. All tests also came back negative.

There have also been no positive COVID-19 tests over the weekend.

Mine site update

Gahcho Kue has worked with public health to appropriately return all those who were isolated and received negative COVID-19 tests home.

Mine Site Testing Update

After an investigation, it has been determined that a clerical error caused the incorrect sample to be sent for re-assessment by Stanton Territorial Hospital’s lab.

This is why there was initially a false positive reported, and why the confirmed case was not identified in the first round of testing.

Any questions should be directed to GuardRX.

Risk Profile

There is currently no indication of ongoing transmission. Public health will continue to monitor the situation and provide updates if the situation changes.

Wastewater testing in Yellowknife will soon be fully-implemented. This will provide additional details which public health can use to further assess risk.

Recovered cases

Three active cases of COVID-19 have recovered since the last update.

This is because the individuals have been isolated for at least 10 days since COVID-19 symptom onset COVID-19, their symptoms have completely resolved.

Stay calm, take action

There is no need for alarm. But as cases rise down south, it is crucial for everyone to double-down on the fundamental public health practices we know work to keep us safe.

  • 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. They are here to help you stay safe.
  • If you are required to self-isolate, stick to your plan to keep others safe.

We all have a role in responding to this pandemic. Play yours.

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