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Fisher River, Peguis tests show first probable COVID-19 cases on Manitoba First Nations

THE CANADIAN PRESS/CDC via AP, File

Three people have tested positive for COVID-19 in two neighbouring Interlake Indigenous communities — the first cases in Manitoba First Nations since the beginning of the pandemic.

A probable positive COVID-19 case was detected on Fisher River Cree Nation, while in nearby Peguis First Nation two probable COVID-19 cases were identified Friday.

In a statement released Friday, Fisher River Health Services said the person received a positive test in the community Thursday.

It has been sent to the provincial laboratory for confirmation. The person is in stable condition and self-isolating.

The investigation has found the person was exposed to the virus in Winnipeg on Sept. 6 and was asymptomatic when returning to the community.

READ MORE: First numbers released for case counts in 12 Winnipeg neighbourhoods

Fisher River Health Services have already contacted those who were in close contact with the person and they are now in self-isolation for 14 days.

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The statement is asking all residents in the community to wear a mask in public and maintain physical distancing.

The community is also working to expand testing capacity.

School in Fisher River has now been tentatively rescheduled to begin on Sept. 28.

The Fisher River Gaming Centre has closed until further notice and all visits to the Ochekwi-Sipi Cree Nation Personal Care Home in the community have been put on hold.

On Wednesday, Peguis Public Health was notified two individuals had been in close contact with a person who had tested positive — those two people self-isolated before they were tested Friday.

“Leadership reminds community members that our team has been preparing for this situation and we are implementing the safest action plan to help limit the spread of COVID-19,” Peguis Public Health and the community’s leadership said in a statement.

Fisher River and Peguis are approximately 190 kilometres north of Winnipeg.

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