April 24, 2020: Yukon’s Chief Medical Officer of Health provides update on COVID-19

Yukon’s Chief Medical Officer of Health Dr. Brendan Hanley has the following updates for the Yukon public on measures being taken in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

COVID-19 cases and recoveries

As of today, April 24, at 3 p.m. the case count remains at 11 cases of COVID-19 in the territory.

Eight of the 11 people who have contracted COVID-19 in Yukon have recovered and all others are doing well at home. No one has had to go to a hospital.

Daily updates

Information about COVID-19 tests is published daily on Yukon.ca. This includes how many confirmed cases there are in Yukon, how many tests have been negative, how many results are pending, the total number of tests and how many people have recovered.

Changes to testing criteria

From Monday, April 27, the criteria for who is tested for COVID-19 in Yukon will be expanded. People will be tested if they have any one of the following symptoms and if they have travelled outside the territory in the last 14 days or have had close contact with anyone who has travelled outside the territory.

The symptoms for recent travellers include fever, chills, cough, difficulty breathing, a sore throat or hoarse voice, headache, runny nose or nasal congestion, unexplained vomiting or diarrhea, fatigue or muscle aches, or loss of smell or taste.

People with no travel history but who are experiencing fever, cough, or difficulty breathing can also be tested.

Testing will also be broadened in long-term care facility residents and the Whitehorse Emergency Shelter clients.

The reasons for broadening the testing criteria are that due to being well past the peak of flu season we are seeing fewer people come forward for testing. We wish to continue with high rates of testing to detect any COVID as early as possible. We also are working to continue to protect vulnerable populations and to increase our ability to detect signals of community transmission. Community transmission means it is no longer possible to trace how somebody became infected. The origin of all 11 cases in Yukon so far has been traced back to travel outside the territory.

Health care providers continue to have the discretion to make decisions about who is tested or not based on their clinical expertise.

The self-assessment tool on Yukon.ca and the 811 Health Line will be updated with the new criteria on April 27.

Doctor’s offices and community health centres

Yukoners are reminded they can call their doctor for their regular health needs such as renewing medication, dealing with chronic health conditions or to discuss new concerns. Doctor’s offices and community health centres remain open.

Health support for Yukon communities

Information about health services support for communities during the pandemic has been added to Yukon.ca, including health care access, mental health services and the testing process. 

Latest information

To keep up to date with the latest information, Yukoners should visit Yukon.ca/COVID-19.

Contact 

Pat Living
Communications, Health and Social Services
867-335-1531
patricia.living@gov.yk.ca

News release #: 
20-111