Halifax police officer being tested after family had contact with COVID-19 patient

Halifax Regional Police say one of its officers is being tested after a close family member of the officer was in contact with an individual who has tested positive for COVID-19.

“In the interest of safeguarding the health of our employees and citizens we serve, we are exercising an abundance of caution and transparency and taking a number of steps,” said Halifax police in a press release issued late on Friday.

All employees who had contact with the officer are now in isolation, the workplace of the officer is being thoroughly disinfected with a particular focus on high-touch surfaces and the equipment and vehicles that the officer used or may have come in contact with are also being disinfected.

Police say the officer has also been in contact with Nova Scotia’s public health department.

Questions about COVID-19? Here are some things you need to know:

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Health officials caution against all international travel. Returning travellers are legally obligated to self-isolate for 14 days, beginning March 26, in case they develop symptoms and to prevent spreading the virus to others. Some provinces and territories have also implemented additional recommendations or enforcement measures to ensure those returning to the area self-isolate.

Symptoms can include fever, cough and difficulty breathing — very similar to a cold or flu. Some people can develop a more severe illness. People most at risk of this include older adults and people with severe chronic medical conditions like heart, lung or kidney disease. If you develop symptoms, contact public health authorities.

To prevent the virus from spreading, experts recommend frequent handwashing and coughing into your sleeve. They also recommend minimizing contact with others, staying home as much as possible and maintaining a distance of two metres from other people if you go out.

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