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Health Unit says cases do not indicate an outbreak

Health Unit addresses the media after two positive COVID-19 related to Chippewa Secondary School
20200330 north bay parry sound district health unit
North Bay Parry Sound District Health Unit. Jeff Turl/BayToday.

The North Bay Parry Sound District Health Unit says two individuals connected to Chippewa secondary school who have been exposed to COVID-19 were exposed to the virus outside the school setting meaning transmission is not likely within the school. 

Dr. Jim Chirico, Chief Medical Officer of Health at the North Bay-Parry Sound District Health Unit held an online press conference on Monday afternoon to address the concern at the area school.  He says they have used contact tracing and that some students and staff at the school are in self-isolation at home. 

See related: Near North Board confirms second COVID-19 case at Chippewa

"The Health Unit has not declared an outbreak, as the cases do not have an epidemiological link, meaning they are not a part of the same class or cohort and transmission took place outside the school," Chirico stated.  

"The Health Unit is working with the school board to ensure that all close contacts are contacted directly. The individuals are currently self-isolating."

Dr. Chirico also credited schools with doing a good job following the protocols and health guidelines.  

Meantime North Bay Mayor Al McDonald is concerned too. In his daily COVID-19 message he says we are going backwards.  

"Six cases in three days," he said. 

"We need you to be informed and ask that you take no chances."

McDonald also says Chippewa students should not be stereotyped due to the positive cases related to the school.  

"Further, the students that attend Chippewa should not be bullied or ignored just because they attend this school," he stated.  

"They need your support more than ever. We ask that you be kind, supportive and understanding. If you follow all the protocols and maintain 6 feet, your risk profile is low."

McDonald suggests we will likely see more cases at other schools or workplaces in the future. 

"Thanksgiving weekend was a real test and we will know more this week on how we did," said the North Bay Mayor.  

Chris Dawson

About the Author: Chris Dawson

Chris Dawson has been with since 2004. He has provided up-to-the-minute sports coverage and has become a key member of the BayToday news team.
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