Four new COVID-19 cases in PEI; vaccine update
Chief Public Health Officer Dr. Heather Morrison has announced four new cases of COVID-19 in Prince Edward Island.
“The current outbreak is a reminder of how quickly COVID-19 can spread. We continue to focus on limiting the extent of the outbreak and containing further spread of COVID-19 in our province,” said Dr. Morrison. “We need to work together and continue to demonstrate PEI’s resilience and adaptability for the next few months as we roll out the vaccine.”
One individual is a man in his 20s, a close contact of a positive case related to the cluster of cases in Charlottetown. The man tested negative initially, but after developing symptoms tested positive. As he was identified as a close contact, he is already in self-isolation.
Another case, a man in his 20s, is in the preliminary stages of investigation and contact tracing.
The other cases are a male and a female in their 20s who are connected to each other. Public health nursing is investigating if these cases are related to the clusters of cases in Charlottetown and Summerside. These individuals are now in self-isolation, with mild symptoms.
There is one additional public exposure location in Charlottetown related to the cases:
- Bombay Cuisine (339 University Avenue)
- Saturday, February 20 between 6:00 pm and 7:00 pm
Dr. Morrison also confirmed that two cases announced last Wednesday, February 24 have been confirmed by the National Microbiology Lab in Winnipeg as the variant B.188.8.131.52, first identified in the United Kingdom.
Effective Sunday, February 28 at midnight, for at least 72 hours, the entire province has moved to red level measures, with some modifications. These restrictions allow time for additional targeted testing of asymptomatic Islanders and gain a better understanding of the extent of the outbreak. An update will be provided tomorrow on whether measures will be continued or transitioned back to Circuit Breaker measures.
Between Saturday and end of day yesterday, more than 10,000 tests were collected across PEI, including 2,800 rapid tests taken at the Stratford and Three Oaks clinics.
As of Saturday, February 27, a total of 12,596 doses of COVID-19 vaccine have been administered in PEI, 7,377 Islanders have had one dose of the vaccine.
As more evidence emerges, PEI will move to extend the timeframe between the first and second doses of the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines. Dr. Morrison said that, as PEI expects to receive approximately 100,000 doses of vaccine in PEI between March and July, every Islander over the age of 16 will be offered a single dose of the vaccine by the end of June. In order to maintain protection a second dose, or booster injection, is needed. This approach will allow PEI to achieve herd immunity faster, protecting more Islanders from COVID-19.
Dr. Morrison is reminding all Islanders to get tested if they experience any symptoms of COVID-19, and self-isolate until the results come back. Islanders are also encouraged to download the free national COVID Alert app, which will let them know if they have been exposed to someone who has tested positive for COVID-19.
Prince Edward Island currently has 22 active cases of COVID-19 and has had a total of 136 positive cases since the onset of the pandemic. For information about the province’s COVID-19 cases, visit: PEI COVID-19 Case Data.
The Chief Public Health Office continues to work closely with the federal government, provincial and territorial counterparts, government departments and Health PEI to monitor the pandemic situation and prepare for all COVID-19 related impacts to the province, including health, social and economic. The public health risk of COVID-19 is continually reassessed and Islanders will be updated as new information becomes available.
Everyone is encouraged to follow routine prevention measures:
- Wash hands frequently with soap and water
- Cough and sneeze into your elbow or a tissue
- Stay home if you are not feeling well
- Limit touching your eyes, nose and mouth
- Keep your circle of contacts small
- Wear a mask in closed, indoor public spaces
- Physical distance - stay two meters (6 feet) apart
- Don’t share items like drinking glasses and water bottles
- Frequently clean surfaces like taps, doorknobs and countertops
- Visit a drop-in-clinic to be tested if you have COVID-19 symptoms
Health and Wellness