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Two new COVID-19 deaths, 26 new cases in Nova Scotia
HALIFAX -- Nova Scotia is reporting two more COVID-19-related deaths, bringing the province's death toll to nine.
Both deaths occurred at the Northwood long-term care facility in Halifax.
"On behalf of all Nova Scotians, I extend my deepest condolences to the families and friends of these two individuals," said Premier Stephen McNeil. "I want to assure everyone, but particularly those who live and work at Northwood, that the health-care system has mobilized to help you through this."
This comes a day after the province announced that three Northwood residents died on Friday.
PROVINCE DETAILS NEW SUPPORT PLAN FOR NORTHWOOD
In a news conference on Sunday, premier Stephen McNeil announced that residents of Northwood who have recovered from COVID-19 will be moved to a local hotel. The first resident was taken to the hotel Sunday morning.
"The first resident was transferred earlier today by ambulance and I'm told that the family was there to wave as their mom moved in," McNeil said.
"This plan to bring people who have recovered out of facility both protects those individuals but also helps bring more people in and create more space and COVID units," said Dr. Robert Strang, Nova Scotia's chief medical officer of health during Sunday's news conference.
McNeil said Shannex has donated equipment, including electric beds, tables and other supplies for to support the care unit at the hotel.
McNeil also announced that 40 N.S. health employees, including employees from the Halifax Infirmary COVID-19 unit have been deployed to Northwood, as have recent medical school graduates.
They will also be establishing a team onsite to conduct testing for COVID-19.
"I want residents, families and staff to know that we're here to support them and work with them to bring the virus under control at this facility," added Strang in a statement. "Northwood is an excellent operator and I have confidence in their work. But this is a very large facility, the virus is circulating broadly, many staff and residents have tested positive and they need our help."
"We are so grateful for the support we've received from our health-care colleagues, so we can continue to focus on the care of our residents," said Janet Simm, CEO of Northwood. "With the emergency measures that are being put in place, these additional resources will help our team focus on what is most important - providing quality care for our residents. We remain committed to ensuring those in our care continue to receive the best care possible."
26 NEW CASES
The province is also reporting 26 new cases of COVID-19 Sunday, bringing the province's total to 675.
The province says 200 people have recovered from the virus and their cases are considered resolved.
The QEII Health Sciences Centre's microbiology lab completed 856 tests on Saturday and is operating 24-hours.
To date, Nova Scotia has 21,120 negative test results and 675 positive results.
Eleven people are currently in hospital. Four of those patients are in intensive care units.
The confirmed cases range in age from under 10 to over 90.
MORE CASES AT NORTHWOOD LONG-TERM CARE FACILITY
Twenty-one more residents and nine more staff members at a long-term care facility in Halifax have tested positive for COVID-19.
A total of 80 residents and 35 staff members at Northwood’s Halifax campus have now tested positive for the coronavirus, according to a statement posted on their website Saturday.
A total of five Northwood residents have now died of COVID-19 -- more than half of the nine deaths across the province.
There have also been four home-care workers and two health services staff from Northwood who have tested positive. Those numbers have not increased since April 12, but Northwood says they are currently testing additional Health Services staff for potential COVID-19 exposure, and those workers are now off work.
"As part of their COVID-19 plan, Northwood has established COVID units, where all of the people who have tested positive were moved into those units, but in the last few days those number shave grown signficantly, so they have had to keep people up on wards and isolated them as much as possible."
As of April 19, the province was reporting eight licensed long-term care homes in Nova Scotia with cases of COVID-19, involving 93 residents and 54 staff.
WHERE ARE THE CASES LOCATED?
Health officials say there are cases across the province. More information about the breakdown of cases is available in an online map.
The map breaks the cases down according to the Nova Scotia Health Authority’s four zones and indicates where testing was conducted, not necessarily where the individuals live.
All 26 of Nova Scotia's new cases on Sunday were confirmed in the central zone, which contains the Halifax Regional Municipality.
- Western zone: 49 cases
- Central zone: 545 cases
- Northern zone: 36 cases
- Eastern zone: 45 cases
SYMPTOMS AND SELF-ISOLATION
The province has also recently expanded the list of symptoms for which it is screening.
Anyone who experiences two or more of the following symptoms is encouraged to take an online questionnaire to determine if they should call 811 for further assessment.
- New or worsening cough
- Sore throat
- Runny nose
Anyone who tests positive for COVID-19 must self-isolate, away from the public, for 14 days.
Anyone who travelled outside of the province is also required to self-isolate for two weeks.