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Atlantic premiers urge caution over holiday season to slow the spread of COVID-19

Click to play video: 'New Brunswickers talk masking up against Omicron' New Brunswickers talk masking up against Omicron
With expert guidance leaning toward N95 masks, New Brunswickers say they’re opting for them – if they can find them. Travis Fortnum reports. – Dec 20, 2021

Atlantic Canadians are being urged by the region’s four premiers to exercise caution during the holiday season to slow the spread of COVID-19.

The appeal was issued in a statement following a teleconference meeting Monday hosted by New Brunswick Premier Blaine Higgs, during which the premiers discussed the recent surge in COVID-19 infections, driven by the highly contagious Omicron variant.

Read more: Nova Scotians with COVID-19 stress importance of vaccines, rapid testing

The premiers are stressing the importance of following public health guidance and they say holiday gatherings should be limited to a small circle of friends and family members.

They are also asking people to avoiding large gatherings and to wear a well-fitting mask in public places, while maintaining two metres of physical distance in public settings and seeking testing when symptoms emerge.

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The premiers stress the goal of following public health restrictions is to reduce the threat of hospitals in the region becoming overwhelmed by seriously ill COVID-19 patients.

Read more: COVID-19 restrictions in New Brunswick for the holidays, and the impact Omicron is having

Meanwhile, people visiting Newfoundland and Labrador will have to self-isolate for five days in a restriction that takes effect at 3 p.m. today.

Travellers must also take a COVID-19 rapid test on each of those five days, and family members are permitted to isolate with them.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Dec. 21, 2021.

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