Nova Scotia Ramps Up Testing Capacity As Infection Rates Rise


Infection rates are on the rise in Nova Scotia even as health officials fight to identify the source. Officials have decided the best cause of action is to increase their testing capacity, so the chief medical health officer is asking people to go for COVID-19 tests.

Dr. Robert Strang, the Chief Medical Officer, said they had identified two clusters that they are assessing keenly – one Beaverbank and the other in Annapolis Valley.

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Last week, they noticed an increase in the number of infections, the doctor said in the last press briefing. He added that they are getting quite concerned about community infection. They are now seeing cases with no discernible link to known cases or travel.

The area province reported three additional cases this Wednesday, which brought the total tally to 21. These cases were reported in the central zone. Of the three, one has had close contact with a registered case. Health officials are still investigating the other two for possible links.

Health officials in the province issued several exposure-related notices on Wednesday, the western zone, and a number of other locations in the central zone and Halifax’s transit route.

Cases in this cluster are low, but Dr. Strang noted that they are working fast and carefully to prevent exposure conditions. The doctor added that they registered three cases in Beaverbank for which they have not identified a cause. He asked people residing between Berwick and Wolfville to go for tests.

Additionally, health officials are asking people to minimize socializing for the next three months. Although people are observing socializing limits, frequent interactions with diverse groups are problematic. People should limit social gatherings to at most 10 persons.
Nova Scotia is setting up community clinics, including a prototype health clinic at IWK Health Clinic for 80-year-olds and above.

Information will be provided in the coming days, informing persons in this age range how to book a vaccination appointment.

Dr. Strang also noted that they would be received about 14700 new doses before the end of this week and 10000 Pfizer-BioNTech vaccines in the following weeks until the end of next month. About 29237 persons have been vaccinated, and 11658 have received both the first and second doses.