New Brunswick Tribune

Tuesday, February 27, 2024

In response to a COVID outbreak, the Oromocto First Nation has locked down the community

Key sentence:

  • Gail Harding said the outbreak was declared at Oromocto First Nation after confirming positive cases, which now total 15.
  • Rapid tests have also been sent to every household, according to Sabattis-Atwi.

In reply to a COVID-19 outbreak in Oromocto First Nation, security checkpoints have been put up, guests are not allowed in, and residents are monitored and assisted.

According to Chief Shelley Sabattis, the outbreak in the community roughly 20 kilometres east of Fredericton began when a non-member visited a residence on the reserve and introduced the infection to members of that household.

The First Nation has put in place “every measure you can think of,” according to Sabattis, who added that the provincial rapid outbreak management team, or PROMT, is also prepared to move in.

“At every entry point, we have security in place 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. In addition, we’ve received supplies and donations from nearby villages and organizations.”

Gail Harding, a spokesperson for the Department of Health, said the outbreak was declared at Oromocto First Nation after confirming positive cases, which now total 15.

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In an email, Chantel Daigle, an Oromocto First Nation nurse, said the first case was identified on November 4, though she doesn’t believe it was the index case.

According to her, while PCR tests have confirmed 15 instances, nine others who tested positive with a fast test have presumptive cases.

Daigle said it’s impossible to gauge the epidemic’s severity, but she’s “extremely concerned” because the town is densely populated and involves interconnected families.

“This situation is constantly evolving and changing daily,” Daigle said, adding that the band has already imposed a single-household bubble restriction.

“We’re all doing our hardest to keep it from spreading further, and we know that health-care resources in the province are stretched in many areas, so I know that many organizations are assisting to the best of their abilities.”

On Friday, the province said that an outbreak had occurred in Woodstock First Nation, roughly 90 km west of Fredericton, with a total of 16 cases confirmed.

Oromocto First Nation locks down community in response to COVID outbreak

Those who are isolating themselves are offered assistance.

Apart from not allowing outsiders in, Oromocto First Nation band councillor Allan Sabattis-Atwin said the community only allows members to leave the reserve for vital reasons like purchasing groceries.

According to him, anyone who has been identified as a positive case must isolate at home with all other household members.

“We have a team that interacts with the public… They communicate with them regularly to ensure that they have whatever they require, whether it is groceries, medicines, or tobacco, “According to Sabattis-Atwin.

“Anything they require so that we can keep them isolated in their house and reduce the chance of disease spread,” says the doctor.

Rapid tests have also been sent to every household, according to Sabattis-Atwin, and anyone who tests positive is followed up with for additional testing.

OFN Fuels is still operating as needed, according to a previous statement from Oromocto First Nation.

Still, all patrons are being stopped and asked normal COVID-19 questions, and their names and contact information are being logged in case contact tracing is needed.

Source: CBC

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