Individual Diagnosed With COVID-19 in Fort Smith

News Type: 

No risk to public identified.


YELLOWKNIFE December 17, 2020 – An individual has been diagnosed with COVID-19 in Fort Smith.

The individual returned from domestic travel outside the NWT.

They are doing well and isolating at home. 


Public health’s investigation identified only one contact that is self-isolating.  

Public risk

There are no identified risks of exposure in public places or through air travel.

Actions taken to mitigate risk

Public health provided isolation advice for the individual and contact. Monitoring will continue.

ID NOW in action

The diagnosis was identified with the territory’s recently-deployed ID NOW device.

This provided preliminary diagnosis in just 15 minutes and was confirmed quickly by the laboratory at Stanton Territorial Hospital.

At first sign of symptoms, get tested for COVID-19

Most who get COVID-19 will get mildly sick. But transmission from a person with mild illness to another person can still occur, and may cause severe illness – especially if it’s someone already at high-risk.

That’s why our strong recommendation is to call your local health centre or public health unit to arrange for COVID-19 testing as soon as you have any symptoms.

By doing so, you can be provided the appropriate care and advice quickly.

Getting tested early is a good way to control the risk of potential infection, and limit spread to family, friends and other community members.   


All commentary is attributable to Dr. Kami Kandola, Chief Public Health Officer for the Northwest Territories.

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