Nova Scotia reports four more COVID-19 deaths, bringing total to 16

By Canadian Press

CHARLOTTETOWN — Nova Scotia is reporting four more deaths related to COVID-19, bringing the provincial total to 16.

Health officials say three of the new deaths occurred at the Northwood long-term care home in Halifax and the other occurred at Harbourstone Enhanced Care in Sydney.

Nova Scotia also reported 55 new cases of the virus on Thursday, for a provincewide total of 827 confirmed cases.

There are 10 licensed long-term care homes and unlicensed seniors facilities in Nova Scotia with cases of COVID-19, involving 158 residents and 79 staff.

Dr. Robert Strang, the province’s chief medical officer of health, has said the biggest challenge in fighting the virus is now in long-term care homes.

He has also said the province’s overall numbers are being driven by outbreaks in the facilities, with the majority occurring at the 485-resident Northwood facility in Halifax.

Meanwhile, Newfoundland and Labrador’s chief medical officer of health announced two new public orders on Thursday as the province reported no new cases of COVID-19.

Dr. Janice Fitzgerald said that starting Friday, all travellers arriving into the province will need to complete a declaration form. As of Monday, they will also be required to submit a 14-day self-isolation plan.

Following several days of no new cases, Fitzgerald said authorities have begun considering ways to relax lockdown measures.

Also during the Newfoundland news conference, a survivor of COVID-19 addressed reporters and told his story.

Bill Woolridge said he tested positive for the virus a few days after he attended a March 17 funeral for his brother-in law at Caul’s Funeral Home in St. John’s.

The symptoms started a couple of days later with a headache, he said.

On March 21, Woolridge said he was notified that someone who attended the funeral had tested positive for COVID-19. The next day, Woolridge said he started to get fever and chills. He was tested for the virus the following Tuesday and the results came back positive for him and negative for his wife.

“We were instructed to isolate for 14 days and we were also asked to separate from each other in our home,” Woolridge said.

He said he stayed two metres apart from his wife, slept in a separate bedroom, ate at a separate table and used a separate bathroom.

“Those measured appeared to work,” he said. “My wife never contracted the coronavirus. I guess that’s proof that physical distancing works.”

This report by The Canadian Press was first published April 23, 2020.

The Canadian Press

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