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Nunavut will restrict PCR testing for COVID-19 to ease healthcare resources

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Nunavut will no longer offer lab-confirmed testing for communities with COVID-19 to free up health-care resources.

Chief public health officer Dr. Michael Patterson says that means Nunavut’s case counts will no longer reflect the total number of infections.

Laboratory PCR tests will only be used to confirm COVID-19 in communities without previous cases and for people and staff in high-risk settings, including long-term care and front-line health workers.

Read more: Nunavut imposes ‘circuit-breaker’ lockdown amid COVID-19 spike

Patterson says rapid testing will be used in the territory and shipments of the kits are to arrive in Nunavut in the coming days.

There are 244 cases of COVID-19 in Nunavut spread over 12 communities, the territory’s largest outbreak to date.

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Health minister John Main says he expects COVID-19 to be in all of Nunavut’s 25 communities by the end of the month.

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This report by The Canadian Press was first published Jan, 6, 2022.

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