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COVID-19 GN Update - May 19, 2020

19 May 2020

Premier’s update:

Good afternoon. There are still no confirmed or probable cases of COVID-19 in Nunavut.

Today, the total number of people under investigation to date is 948. 261 people are currently under investigation.

There is one Nunavut resident on medical travel in Southern Canada who has tested positive for COVID-19. They are doing well, and receiving excellent care. Their medical escort is isolating and being monitored. Neither their location in the south nor their home communities will be identified. The case is out-of-territory and they have a right to privacy.

As you have likely heard, a staff member at the Embassy West long-term care facility, where some of our Elders receive advanced care, has tested positive for COVID-19. This individual had no direct contact with residents. The Department of Health has been in contact with all families about the situation, and is offering support and regular updates.

All hospitals and boarding homes have strict protocols in place to minimize the risk of spreading COVID-19. Our government will continue to work with these facilities to ensure the health and safety of Nunavummiut in the South for medical care.

Let's support one another through this tough time.

I am sending positivity and best wishes for a speedy recovery and hope you all join me in doing the same.


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

COVID Hotline and Self-Assessment Tool

Anyone who has reason to believe they have been exposed to COVID-19 is advised to call the COVID hotline at 1-888-975-8601 between 10 a.m. and 6 p.m., or notify their community health centre right away, and immediately isolate at home for 14 days.

Anyone with access to internet can also take the online self-assessment tool

Traveller repatriation summary:

Departure Date

# of Travellers from Isolation Sites

May 19


May 20


May 21


May 22


May 23


Critical Worker Requests

As of May 18, there are 1,039 requests, 870 of which are critical worker requests.

Request Status



Approved (includes critical and non-critical)












Ongoing services:

Access to health care services will remain available in all communities seven days a week. All non-urgent requests will be triaged daily. Immediate access to urgent and emergent health care services are and will continue to be available 24 hours a day, seven days a week. All clients are asked to call before presenting at a health facility.

  • In Iqaluit, public health, the emergency room and inpatient unit will remain open.
  • Well baby clinics, prenatal visits and immunizations are continuing across Nunavut.
  • Physicians will continue community visits. If this is not possible, the visits will be conducted by telehealth or by phone.


Adjusted services:

Appointments at health facilities are being triaged, this means the appointment may be over the phone or in person.

Medical travel services have been reduced to urgent medical travel only. Clients will be advised of these changes and involved in discussions.

In Iqaluit, outpatient clinics and rehab are triaging all appointments and conducting appointments. Lab and Diagnostic Imaging services at QGH are on reduced services. All upcoming appointments are being triaged.

MHA has moved to telephone check in and support for some clients. Scheduled appointments for medication pick up and administration remain the same. If you are in crisis, present to the health centre. Home visits to administer medications will be treated on a case by case basis.

Closed /Cancelled/Suspended services:

Only emergency dental services will be provided in until further notice.

Speciality clinics have been cancelled. Work is underway to determine which clients can be seen by phone/virtual care.

All non-essential travel for mental health clients and families is cancelled. All non-essential travel for families visiting clients in care is cancelled.

No visitors will be allowed at long term care facilities in Nunavut – Continuing Care Centres (CCCs) and Elders’ Homes.


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.