Six more coronavirus cases identified on Haida Gwaii

Health officials in northern B.C. have confirmed six new COVID-19 cases linked to an ongoing outbreak on Haida Gwaii.

Northern Health first declared a community outbreak involving 13 residents of the archipelago on July 24. The first case of the virus was made public on July 18.

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The number of cases has now climbed to 20, 13 of which are considered active.

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Northern Health sought to reassure residents Wednesday that the new cases “do not represent a significant expansion of the outbreak, nor do they suggest wider spread of COVID-19 in Haida Gwaii communities.”

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The new cases are linked to exposures to known cases that took place prior to the outbreak declaration, said Northern Health. It added that additional cases contracted in that time period may yet be identified.

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The health authority said the new cases are all believed to be epidemiologically-linked to the original outbreak.

Those original cases are thought to be related to off-island travel by residents, though an investigation into the initial source of infection remains ongoing.

Read more: First case of coronavirus reported on Haida Gwaii

The health authority said no one has been hospitalized on Haida Gwaii due to the virus, and that all known cases are isolating at home.

The Council of the Haida Nation declared a state of emergency on March 24, calling on non-residents to stay away from the islands.

© 2020 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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