FREDERICTON, N.B — Dr. Jennifer Russell, Chief Medical Officer of Health, and Premier Blaine Higgs held an emergency COVID-19 briefing on May 31st.
There are three new cases of COVID-19, all confirmed in residents of a long-term care facility, Manoir de la Vallée in Atholville New Brunswick. All of the cases go back to the confirmed case of a healthcare worker who failed to isolate upon return from Quebec for “personal reasons”.
All of the infected individuals are over the age of 80.
“There are now 12 active cases in the province, all in zone 5, but there is a possibility that it can spread beyond that region because we know that the incubation period is 14 days,” Dr. Russell said. “We have a two week period ahead of us where we’re going to be watching very carefully what happens in that region and all around us.”
“Every corner of the province needs to be vigilant”. – Dr. Russell
The government has tested over 2,000 residents who did not have symptoms. The province is only going to be testing persons with two symptoms.
COVID-19, however, has been present in individuals with no symptoms, and some doctors have reported that the symptoms vary in person to person.
Dr. Russell suggested that we should not hold the blame on one person, but instead should focus on what we can control, such as wearing masks or disinfecting our homes.
Premier Blaine Higgs said that just yesterday more than 1300 tests were conducted, the highest number in one day since the pandemic began.
Premier Higgs suggested that all New Brunswickers have a mask with them at all times, the same as they would their keys and wallet. If physical distancing is not possible, all residents should then take it upon themselves to wear a mask.
Questions directed to Premier Higgs were answered by Dr. Russell instead. It is unclear why Higgs did not answer directly.
Most of the questions revolved around testing, self-isolating, and checkpoints for those traveling in and out of zones. Dr. Russell mentioned it is concerning, but did not mention further government action on limiting travel.