Staff Directory

You are here

COVID-19 GN Update - May 17, 2021

17 May 2021

Premier’s update:

Today we are reporting no new cases and three recoveries of COVID-19. There are 65 active cases in the territory, 64 in Iqaluit and one in Kinngait. There have been 164 recoveries to date in this outbreak.

So far, 16,713 Nunavummiut have received their first dose of the Moderna vaccine, and 13,304 Nunavummiut are now fully vaccinated.

While I’m happy to have seen our active case counts decrease this weekend, it’s really, really important that we not lose focus or use this as any kind of excuse to ease the hard work we’re doing.

We know how easily this virus spreads and how quickly it can turn into an outbreak. There are almost no justifications to break current measures, so stay strong and keep wearing your mask when outside your home. Stay home as much as possible. Don’t bring your family to the store, if you don’t have to. Keep strict social distance with people outside your household bubble. If you haven’t already, get vaccinated.

Thank you again to everyone doing their part to fight COVID-19 in Nunavut. I appreciate your hard work and sacrifices. Let’s keep staying apart, so when we can gather again, everyone is there and healthy. Stay home and stay safe.


Chief Public Health Officer Update:

Good morning,

On Saturday we announced a new positive case in Kinngait. This new case was found through surveillance testing and was a result of household transmission. All cases in the community have been limited to the same home and all household members are isolating. We did not increase restrictions in the community because the risk of the virus spreading in the community is low at this time.

I also wish to correct a previous announcement on hospital admissions due to COVID-19. There have been 3 individuals admitted to hospitals in Ottawa, 2 remain in hospital and 1 has been released.

This weekend in Iqaluit, we saw recoveries outpace new positive cases. While this is encouraging, it's important to remember that there will be fluctuations in the number of new cases identified. I would like to reiterate that the virus continues to spread in Iqaluit. If we want to contain this, it is essential that we continue to follow the current measures. That is the only way to ensure we stop transmission, flatten the curve and end the outbreak.

I want to also reassure people that medical travel to Iqaluit and back to other communities is low risk. The boarding home and the hospital are taking the appropriate precautions to keep the risk low. As an additional precaution, medical travellers are also required to isolate when they return home to other communities. Delaying necessary medical travel can cause harm.

Finally, we have submitted a request for enough doses of the Pfizer vaccine to vaccinate all teenagers in Nunavut and expect confirmation this week. Once we receive confirmation of the number of doses, we will be in a position to plan and implement roll-out for a portion of our under 18 population.

Thank you.



As part of the Government of Nunavut’s (GN) effort to protect Nunavummiut against the risk of COVID-19, GN Departments are implementing the following:

Department of Health Services

For all the latest information and resources about COVID-19 in Nunavut, go to:

For the latest information on current public health restrictions, go to:

For information on upcoming vaccine clinics go to:


COVID-19 case status: May 17

Total Tests Total confirmed cases Total active cases Total recovered cases Deaths Total persons followed Current persons followed
14,493 624 65 555 4 8656 437

*Confirmed cases include those meeting the national case definitions. Persons followed includes individuals with specific symptoms and exposures as well as others who are self-monitoring or self-isolated. Not all of these individuals have symptoms or require testing.

*There may be a delay reporting attribution and statistics from cases acquired in Southern Canada. 12 cases that were detected out of territory have been attributed to Nunavut. This includes 3 deaths. Not all NU residents with COVID-19 detected out of territory will be attributed to Nunavut.

COVID-19 community case statistics: May 17


Active COVID-19 transmission

Time period Confirmed COVID-19 cases yesterday Confirmed COVID-19 cases today Change in case count +/- from previous day Deaths Recovered Cases Total active cases
Iqaluit Ongoing Since 14/04/2021 220 220 0 0 156 64
Kinngait Ongoing Since 19/04/2021 7 7 0 0 6 1
Rankin Inlet Ongoing Since 24/04/2021 2 2 0 0 2 0
Arviat over

11/2020 – 04/2021

339 339 0 1 338 0
Whale Cove over

11/2020 – 02/2021

23 23 0 0 23 0
Rankin Inlet over

11/2020 – 12/2020

19 19 0 0 19 0
Sanikiluaq over

11/2020 – 12/2020

2 2 0 0 2 0
TOTAL      612 612 0 1 546 65

Testing stats to date: May 17

Community Tests Positive Tests Negative
Iqaluit 220 2924
Kinngait 7 160
Rankin Inlet 2 91
Arviat 339 2,883
Whale Cove 23 352
Rankin Inlet 19 339
Sanikiluaq 2 202
TOTAL  612 6,951

Isolation population: 

Traveler Type Guests in Isolation as of May 14
Medical 412
Public  205
Construction 41
Total 695

Traveller repatriation summary:

Departure Date # of Travellers from Health Isolation Sites
May 15, 2021 7
May 16, 2021 44
May 17, 2021 54
May 18, 2021 93
May 19, 2021 89
Total 287

Critical Worker Requests:

As of May 17, there were 16,446 requests, 8,146 of which were critical worker requests.

Request Status # %
Approved (includes critical and non-critical) 12,682 77.1%
Denied 311 1.9%
Pending 526 3.2%
Common Travel Area 2927 17.8%
Total 16,446 100%



Department of Education Services

Ongoing services:

K-12 Schools

The following stages continue to be in effect:

  • Stage 4 – Schools in Iqaluit
  • Stage 3 – Schools in the Qikiqtani region, except Sanikiluaq and Iqaluit
  • Stage 2 – Schools in Rankin Inlet
  • Stage 1 – Schools in Sanikiluaq, the Kitikmeot region, and Kivalliq region, except for Rankin Inlet

Schools will implement the appropriate action plan for their current stage.

Early Learning and Child Care

All Nunavut childcare facilities can remain open, with the exception of Iqaluit.

Financial Assistance for Nunavut Students (FANS)

Students booking their FANS-eligible travel must follow the public health measures and recommendations of the CPHO. If students have questions about their travel, they can contact the FANS office for information at

Closed /Cancelled/Suspended services:

K-12 Schools

Iqaluit schools are closed for in-school instruction until further notice.

  • In Stage 4, all instruction will be conducted remotely. All schools are closed to students, staff, and the public. School staff will regularly communicate with all students.

Early Learning and Child Care

Iqaluit child care facilities are closed until further notice.



Department of Community and Government services

All isolation requests for construction worker are to be booked through Isolations occur in Ottawa and Quebec City construction hubs, as well as in Winnipeg and Edmonton.

Construction Workers Completed Isolation and Travelled to Nunavut  
2021 Total to Date 986
January 164
February 220
March 204
April 269
May 1- 16 129

May – Dec 2020 Total




Nunavummiut’s health is our shared responsibility! Remember: wash your hands and surfaces, practice social distancing, listen to the advice of health officials, and stay home if you’re sick.