P.E.I. top doc says traveller from U.S. linked to coronavirus cluster was turned away from province

Dr. Heather Morrison, Prince Edward Island's, chief public health officers, speaks during a COVID-19 update. Government of Prince Edward Island

Prince Edward Island’s chief medical officer of health says the traveller from America who appears to be at the centre of the latest coronavirus cluster did not have pre-approval to travel to the island.

Four of the province’s five new cases are connected to a man in his 20s who travelled to Nova Scotia and had contact with an American traveller while there.

Read more: P.E.I. reports 2 new coronavirus cases on Sunday

That traveller intended to travel to P.E.I. but had not applied for the necessary approval to do so.

“One of these cases, a young man travelled to Nova Scotia and spent time with another man in his 20s who recently travelled from the United States,” said Dr. Heather Morrison, chief medical officer of health.

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“There are media reports that this man was travelling to P.E.I. I can confirm that he did not have the necessary pre-approval to Prince Edward Island and he did not come to P.E.I.”

Click to play video: 'Coronavirus: Two new cases reported in P.E.I.' Coronavirus: Two new cases reported in P.E.I.
Coronavirus: Two new cases reported in P.E.I – Jul 5, 2020

The traveller made it as far as the Confederation Bridge before being turned away.

The American traveller entered Nova Scotia on June 26 and has since tested positive for COVID-19.

According to Dr. Morrison, both he and the young man who came in contact with him have mild to no symptoms.

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On Saturday the province reported that one of the confirmed cases was an essential worker who travelled outside of Atlantic Canada.

The three other cases include a woman in her 20s and two men in their 20s, all of whom are close contacts of the 20-year-old man that travelled to Nova Scotia.

Morrison said the 20-year-old made every attempt to self-isolate, but that it can be difficult when there are multiple people in a small environment.

Whisperwood Villa testing to continue

The woman in her 20s is a worker at Whisperwood Villa in Charlottetown.

Morrison said on Monday that all but one of the residents at the facility have been tested.

All test results have come back negative for the novel coronavirus.

A small number of staff at Whisperwood Villa still need to be tested, Morrison said, and confirmed that all staff and residents who are able to be tested will be re-tested later this week.

Anyone who was a visitor to the long-term care facility on June 30 is being contacted in order to arrange for testing.

Dr. Morrison said that all five cases are Islanders and are not connected to the Atlantic Bubble. She says there is no evidence of community spread on the island.

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Read more: 1 new coronavirus case identified in Nova Scotia, total active cases at 4

On Monday the province of Nova Scotia said that an individual travelling from the United States to P.E.I. had tested positive for COVID-19 in Nova Scotia.

That individual is now being quarantined in the province under the federal Quarantine Act.

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