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NWT extends public health emergency for 11th time


The Northwest Territories government is extending the territory-wide public health emergency for the 11th time – until Sept. 1. 

Diane Thom, the territory’s minister of Health and Social Services, made the announcement in a Tuesday press release. It says the public health emergency – which gives the chief public health officer expanded powers – “remains necessary in order to respond decisively to the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic.”

The release says reintroduction of Covid-19 to the NWT is most likely to come from those entering the territory from other locations with community transmission.

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“The risk to the NWT remains significant as increases in cases in southern Canada continue to grow – particularly within our territory’s closest provincial neighbours,” the release states.

The government noted travel from returning residents and others to the NWT continues to grow, and the number of self-isolation plans filed in the territory reached more than 900 last week.

Everyone entering the territory – save for a few exceptions – is required to self-isolate for 14 days in Yellowknife, Inuvik, Fort Smith, or Hay River. 

The public health emergency allows the chief public health officer to make orders on things like self-isolation requirements and travel restrictions. Under legislation, it must be renewed or ended every two weeks. 

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No changes have been announced to existing public health orders in the territory.

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