P.E.I. reports one new COVID-19 case Thursday; vaccines open for adults 40 and up, more frontline workers

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Prince Edward Island is reporting one new case of COVID-19 on Thursday, as health officials open vaccine appointments for adults age 40 to 49.

During a news update on Thursday, P.E.I.'s chief public health officer Dr. Heather Morrison said the case is related to travel outside of Atlantic Canada.

P.E.I. currently has 12 active cases of COVID-19. To date, the province has had 175 positive cases of the novel coronavirus.

POTENTIAL COVID-19 EXPOSURE

Health officials on the island also announced a potential COVID-19 exposure connected to an Air Canada flight.

Anyone who was on the following flight should self-monitor for symptoms of COVID-19, and visit a drop-in testing clinic if symptoms develop.

  • Air Canada flight AC8302 on April 17
  • From Montreal to Charlottetown
  • Symptoms may develop up to, and including, May 1

MORE PEOPLE ELIGIBLE FOR VACCINE

Beginning on Monday, health officials will open vaccine appointments for adults age 40 to 49.

Since it is a large age cohort, appointment bookings will be broken down into four groups based on birth month.

Those born between January and March can call and book appointments on April 27. Birthdays between April and June will be open on April 28. Those with birthdays July to September can call on April 29, and October to December birthdays can book on April 29. 

Frontline workers age 16 to 39, who work with the public and cannot work virtually, are also now able to book an appointment to get vaccinated.

That includes teachers, school staff, bus drivers, early childhood educators, grocery store and retail staff, public transit drivers and food manufacturing and processing workers.

VACCINE UPDATE

P.E.I. will be receiving more than double the amount of Pfizer doses they initially expected this spring.

Morrison said Thursday that the province will receive 47,430 extra doses of the Pfizer vaccine in May and June, and could see some appointments bumped up.

According to Morrison, P.E.I is on track to meet their target of herd immunity by the end of June.

With the increased Pfizer shipment, she expects the province will be able to offer everyone a booster shot no later than 12 weeks after their first dose.

“We continue to make good progress with our vaccine rollout, and our focus is to immunize as many Island residents as possible, as quickly and safely as possible,” said Morrison during Thursday’s update.

As of Tuesday, 46,278 doses of vaccine were administered, including 9,768 second doses.

According to Morrison, 27.4 per cent of adults over the age of 16 have included at least one dose, and 7.3 per cent have received two doses.

TRAVEL FROM OUTSIDE ATLANTIC CANADA SUSPENDED

The province announced Monday travellers from outside of Atlantic Canada will not be allowed to travel to P.E.I. for at least four weeks.

The travel restrictions include:

  • Seasonal residents from outside of Atlantic Canada are advised to defer their travel until at least May 17.
  • New pre-travel applications for seasonal residents from outside of Atlantic Canada will be processed, but will not be allowed to arrive until after May 17.
  • Family connection stream for seasonal residents also paused.
  • Rotational workers from outside of Atlantic Canada will need pre-travel approval, agree to be tested every second day, and will be required to self-isolate until they receive a negative COVID-19 test.
  • Travel to P.E.I. for compassion reasons will be processed on a necessary basis.
  • Increased testing at the Borden and Charlottetown airports.

There are no changes for residents of Atlantic Canada, who will can travel to P.E.I. but must self-isolate for 14 days after arrival.

COVID ALERT APP

Canada’s COVID-19 Alert app is available in Prince Edward Island.

The app, which can be downloaded through the Apple App Store or Google Play, notifies users if they may have been exposed to someone who has tested positive for COVID-19.

COVID-19 SYMPTOMS

Prince Edward Island provides a list of possible COVID-19 symptoms on their website, which include:

  •  new or worsening cough
  •  shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
  •  fever/chills
  •  sore throat
  •  runny nose, sneezing, congestion
  •  headache
  •  muscle/joint/body aches
  •  feeling unwell/unusual tiredness
  •  acute loss of sense of smell or taste

Other symptoms like nausea, vomiting, or diarrhea have been reported, but typically along with other COVID-19 symptoms, and may be seen more often in children.