COVID-19: Worrisome increase in Indigenous communities

COVID-19: Worrisome increase in Indigenous communities

Until then relatively spared from the pandemic, indigenous communities are now facing a significant increase in the number of COVID-19 cases.

In barely a week, the number of active cases has risen from 79 to 121 among First Nations, the Department of Indigenous Services said in a statement on Friday.

While this is the highest weekly increase since the start of the crisis, the federal government has observed this worrying trend since the end of August.

Ottawa notes that many of these outbreaks are caused by people from outside.

Faced with this situation, the Department of Indigenous Services advises against all non-essential travel.

The health standards in force in the rest of the population, such as social distancing and wearing a mask, are also recommended for indigenous communities, it was recalled.

Since the start of the health crisis, 631 people have contracted the virus among the First Nations. COVID-19 has been responsible for 52 hospitalizations. Eleven people died from it.

Nunavik affected

The rebound of the pandemic is also particularly marked in the Far North of Quebec; currently, there are 17 active cases in Nunavik, a region vulnerable to the spread of the virus, in particular due to overcrowding of housing.

Among the Inuit, it is common for the elderly to live with their children and grandchildren.

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