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There are ‘hundreds and hundreds’ of COVID-19 exposure sites in HRM

Don’t be fooled because only buses and flights are on the warning list.


In the middle of April, when the number of new infections was under 10 per day, the list of places where you could catch COVID seemed endless. A typical “potential exposure” warning from the Nova Scotia Health Authority on April 17 included a mall, a grocery store, a Walmart, two fast-food places and a library, adding to the running tally of gyms, retailers, restaurants, flights and such on the NSHA exposures database.

But now, even though there are over 100 new cases daily, the exposure warnings have practically become boring. (The latest NSHA alert, from yesterday, named a government office, three flights and a dozen or so bus routes.) What happened to all the exposure sites?

The Coast put the question to top doc Robert Strang at last Friday’s provincial COVID-19 briefing. “Because of the volume of cases we have, and the time lag for follow-up and our knowledge that the virus is widespread in HRM, we’re focusing on the high-risk situations, a lot of which are workplaces,” Strang says.

If all the “low-risk” exposure sites like food and liquor stores were still listed, Strang says “there’d be hundreds and hundreds” of places named.

Strang says no one in the Central Zone should have a false sense of security because fewer locations are listed on the exposures database. “If you’re out and about in HRM assume that you might have been exposed,” he says, “and get regular testing.”

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