The Nuxalk Nation EOC and Ulkatcho First Nation have received reports of a small number of cases of COVID-19 near Nimpo Lake that health authorities say do not pose any threat to the community at this time, according to Facebook posts issued by the Nations.
In a statement published by the Nuxalk Nation EOC, Vancouver Health Authority (VCH) said that “VCH is aware of a small number of COVID cases near Nimpo Lake, BC.”
VCH spokesperson Deana Lancaster said VCH does not comment on specific cases for patient privacy reasons and would only provide the number of cases in the event of a declared outbreak.
Nimpo Lake is in the VCH region but Interior Health provides health care services to that area.
“VCH is not aware of any risk to the public or neighbouring communities. We have not issued any public notifications on this,” said Lancaster.
“The process for contact tracing is outlined on the BCCDC website here.”
The Ulkatcho First Nation posted on Facebook that the individual is not from Anahim Lake or a First Nation member and that the person(s) affected are self-isolating and following COVID-19 protocols.
“The Emergency Operations Centre is keeping track of the current COVID-19 cases across the province,” stated a Bella Coola Valley-Nuxalk Nation Coordinated Information Bulletin on July, 24.
“We are prepared to make changes as necessary.”
Ulkatcho First Nation said they will not be hosting any large gatherings until further notice and cancelled a community meeting with Artemis Gold Inc. in regards to the Blackwater mine which is in the development phase after having successfully received all necessary environmental assessment approvals.
“You must remain diligent in protecting yourself and others including elders.”
Interior Health said it will notify the public if an outbreak is declared.
Canada’s Chief Public Health Officer Dr. Theresa Tam said she is concerned about the recent rise in cases across the country and reminded everyone “the fate of flattening of the curve is still within each of our hands.”
(With Files from Katya Slepian and Caitlin Thompson, Black Press Media)
•Editor’s note: This story has been updated to reflect the fact that Vancouver Health Authority does not confirm cases of COVID-19 unless it is an outbreak and that VCH did not issue a public statement regarding these cases.