Some First Nations in Manitoba are reporting members in their communities have tested positive for COVID-19.
Previously, the Assembly of Manitoba Chiefs said that all First Nations cases in the province were off-reserve.
But on Friday, both the Fisher River Cree and the Peguis First Nation reported there were people in their communities with positive tests.
Both communities say the positive tests, of which there are three, have been forwarded to the provincial public health laboratory for confirmation. Both communities have also responded with widespread testing.
Peguis First Nation has partnered with Eastern Interlake Regional Health Authority, Ongomiizwin Health Services, Interlake Reserves Tribal Council and Indigenous Services Canada to deploy a mobile testing unit to Peguis to support the response to COVID-19, according to a release.
The rapid COVID-19 test will be available for individuals named as close contacts and those experiencing symptoms. Individuals who would like to be tested will be screened to determine if testing is warranted.
On Saturday a Rapid Response Team arrived in Fisher River and administered 21 rapid point of care tests and seven routine swabs to all the individuals that Fisher River Health Services have identified as close contacts. "We are pleased to announce that the 21 rapid point of care tests performed have all returned NEGATIVE," Fisher River Chief, David Crate, says in a release. "The seven routine swabs performed, along with the 21 rapid point of care tests will be sent to Cadham Labs for confirmation (Monday) morning."
Fisher River Health Services says the confirmed individual in its community began to develop one symptom on the evening of September 8. "Upon developing the symptom the individual remained home on September 9, where they began to develop two more symptoms. On September 10, the individual was notified that they were in close contact with an individual in the Winnipeg health region who was a confirmed positive and that they should be tested which returned positive. The individual was isolated right from the evening of September 8, 2020, and all close contacts were notified immediately."
With files from the Canadian Press.