Trudeau self-isolating after wife Sophie develops fever, gets tested for coronavirus

Click to play video: 'Justin Trudeau and his wife, Sophie, in self-isolation over COVID-19 concerns'
Justin Trudeau and his wife, Sophie, in self-isolation over COVID-19 concerns
WATCH: Justin Trudeau and his wife, Sophie, in self-isolation over COVID-19 concerns – Mar 12, 2020

UPDATE: Sophie Gregoire Trudeau has tested positive for COVID-19


Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is self-isolating after his wife, Sophie Gregoire Trudeau, developed flu-like symptoms and got tested for the new coronavirus disease known as COVID-19.

In a press release on Thursday, the Prime Minister’s Office said she has received a test for the new coronavirus after her symptoms emerged last night following her return from a trip to the U.K., where she had been doing speaking engagements.

While the prime minister has no symptoms, he is self-isolating until her test results are back.

READ MORE: How many Canadians have coronavirus? Total number of confirmed cases by region

“The doctor’s advice to the prime minister is to continue daily activities while self-monitoring, given he is exhibiting no symptoms himself. However, out of an abundance of caution, the prime minister is opting to self-isolate and work from home until receiving Sophie’s results,” the release said.

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“The prime minister will spend the day in briefings, phone calls, and virtual meetings from home, including speaking with other world leaders and joining the special COVID-19 cabinet committee discussion.”

As well, the PMO said all in-person meetings scheduled for Thursday and Friday for the first ministers meeting between Trudeau, federal officials and the provincial and territorial premiers are being postponed.

Click to play video: 'Trudeau self-isolates after wife Sophie develops flu-like symptoms'
Trudeau self-isolates after wife Sophie develops flu-like symptoms

“We continue to base all our decisions on the best evidence, science, and advice from our highly trained medical professionals and public health officials to protect the well-being of Canadians and reduce the risks of COVID-19 to our country,” the statement from the PMO continued.

“Since the beginning of the COVID-19 outbreak, we have urged Canadians to take all necessary precautions and follow medical advice in order to stay safe. This is what the prime minister and his family are doing.”

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Public health officials around the world are grappling with the spread of the new coronavirus outbreak, which originated in China late last year.

READ MORE: Tom Hanks says he, his wife have tested positive for coronavirus

There are more than 127,000 confirmed cases globally, with roughly 4,700 deaths as a result of the virus.

In Canada, there are 103 confirmed cases and one death so far.

READ MORE: Minister of natural resources in self-isolation as ‘precaution’ while awaiting COVID-19 results

The World Health Organization declared the virus a pandemic earlier in the week.

Trudeau’s self-isolation comes just one day after he announced a $1-billion support package to funnel money to the provinces and territories, as well as public health agencies, to prepare to deal with the impact of the new coronavirus.

Click to play video: 'Coronavirus around the world: March 12, 2020'
Coronavirus around the world: March 12, 2020

Multiple Canadian cabinet ministers and politicians are also in isolation after appearances at events where other attendees have tested positive for the new coronavirus.

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Natural Resources Minister Seamus O’Regan and Mary Ng, minister of small business, export promotion and international trade are both self-isolating after speaking at a global mining conference in Toronto last week.

One person, a man from Sudbury, Ont., who was at that conference later tested positive for the new coronavirus.

Trudeau also attended that conference but, when asked by reporters on Wednesday whether he had been tested, said he had not been and had no symptoms.

READ MORE: Montreal Liberal MP in self-isolation after attending event with coronavirus patient

Montreal Liberal MP Anthony Housefather is self-isolating as well after he was at a conference in Washington, D.C., earlier in the month where attendees later tested positive. Two Conservative MPs were also at that conference but have said they are not self-isolating.

NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh said on Twitter on Thursday he is also self-isolating but does not believe he has the virus.

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Health Minister Patty Hajdu told the House of Commons health committee on Wednesday that public health officials estimate between 30 per cent and 70 per cent of Canadians will get the new coronavirus.

While no bans on large gatherings are in place in Canada, officials are urging people to think carefully about any travel plans ahead of spring break and to avoid travel on cruise ships entirely due to the close quarters and easy spread of the virus on them so far.

Hand washing and social distancing are also key ways of reducing the risk of contracting and transmitting the virus.

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