COVID outbreak among health-care workers in Edmundston hospital, N.B. returning to yellow level

Click to play video: 'N.B. businesses optimistic ahead of move to yellow phase of COVID-19 recovery'
N.B. businesses optimistic ahead of move to yellow phase of COVID-19 recovery
New Brunswick is set to move all of its health zones back to the yellow phase of COVID-19 recovery this Sunday. Businesses say they’re cautiously optimistic about the change and hopeful that it eventually leads to a reopening of the Atlantic Bubble. Tim Roszell has the story. – Mar 6, 2021

All zones in New Brunswick are transitioning down to an updated yellow level under the province’s COVID-19 plan, as an Edmundston hospital deals with an outbreak among health-care workers in a surgery unit.

Meanwhile, the province is recording two positive cases Sunday. One case in Zone 3 (Fredericton region) is a person aged 30 to 39 and is travel-related. A case in Zone 7 (Miramichi region) is a person aged 50 to 59 who is linked to a previous case.

Outbreak among staff in Edmundston hospital

The outbreak is at the Edmundston Regional Hospital, where three workers of the Surgery Two unit have tested positive.

As a result, Vitalité Health Network says visitation to the unit has been suspended.

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“We are currently in the process of investigating the situation. This decision has been made for preventive purposes to protect the safety of patients and staff,” said Stéphane Legacy, vice-president of outpatient and professional services with the network, in a statement.

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The province says both symptomatic and asymptomatic staff and patients at the hospital are being tested. Meanwhile, contact tracing for the positive cases is ongoing.

“It is imperative that health-care providers actively self-monitor for COVID-19 symptoms and stay home when sick, even if symptoms are mild,” said chief medical officer of health Dr. Jennifer Russell, in a statement.

“Symptoms that develop after a negative screening test may represent new infection and should never be ignored.”

Province moving to yellow level Sunday night

Meanwhile, the province is moving into the updated yellow level as of 11:59 p.m.

That means residents will now be able to expand their steady list of contacts to 15 from 10. They can also visit venues together, including restaurants.

Click to play video: 'N.B. moving towards loosening public health restrictions'
N.B. moving towards loosening public health restrictions

Sports teams may play within their league across health zones. As well, formal indoor gatherings can take place with an operational plan so long as the venue is at 50 per cent capacity and outdoor gatherings of 50 people or fewer can take place with physical distancing.

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A complete list of regulations can be found on the government’s website.

Testing results and active cases

The province currently has 35 active COVID-19 cases. Three people are currently hospitalized, with two in intensive care.

The government notes 2,434 asymptomatic tests were conducted over the past three days in Zone 7 (Miramichi Region) as part of mass testing clinics to determine whether there was wider spread.

Both Thursday’s and Friday’s test results found no positive cases, but not all of Saturday’s tests have been processed.

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