Fort McMurray worker camp sends guest to hospital with suspected COVID-19

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FORT MCMURRAY, Alta. — The operator of one of the many worker lodges in the Fort McMurray area of northern Alberta confirms that a guest has been transported to hospital with symptoms consistent with COVID-19.

In a statement Friday, Houston-based Civeo Corp. says the worker had no symptoms when he or she checked into the Borealis Lodge, a 1,500-room complex 22 kilometres north of the city, on Wednesday evening but felt ill the next morning.

It says an ambulance took the guest to hospital in Fort McMurray for medical treatment and evaluation, adding results of the tests have not yet been received.

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Civeo says it followed its screening protocol when the worker checked in, adding the person was in the facility less than 12 hours, most of which was spent in the guest’s quarters.

It says it has implemented its quarantine and isolation protocol, which includes closing the individual’s room and completing a deep sanitization for all areas in which the individual was present or assumed present, as well as letting other guests know about the situation.

In its 2018 census, the total non-permanent “shadow” population of the Wood Buffalo region including Fort McMurray was estimated at almost 36,700 people, most of whom were living in worker camps. 

This report by The Canadian Press was first published March 20, 2020.

The Canadian Press

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