The province is refining its approach in dealing with the pandemic, as the threat of variants of concern increase.
That means self-isolation guidelines related to close contacts will be more strict, even as the province attempts to slowly loosen restrictions. That’s because transmission can occur easily, even with little to no symptoms in a person.
"As we are doing our cautious reopening, reopening very slowly – which means we're decreasing public health measures on one side of things and we need to increase our public health measures in other aspects," Roussin said Monday.
Case and contact management will become more and more important, he added.
"Some of these increased or more aggressive case and contact management include lowering the threshold of prolonged contact from 15 minutes to 10 minutes," he said, while emphasizing that’s only a guide.
"If there's high risk contact – somebody was absolutely exposed to droplets, then that could be as little as just a few seconds or minutes," he said.
This will mean more people will be required to self-isolate.
"For all positive cases, everyone within the household of a positive case is going to be deemed a close contact. If somebody is a close contact of a case lives in a different household, all members of that close-contact household must also isolate until the close contact has been tested and they have a negative result," Roussin said.
Further, all close contacts will be required to self-isolate for a minimum of 14 days, regardless of testing results.
While the number of B117 – or UK – variant remains at four, same as announced last week, Dr. Brent Roussin said vigilance must remain high.
Read more in Tuesday’s edition of The Brandon Sun.