COVID-19 in Indigenous communities: active cases in First Nations continue to decline

The number of active COVID-19 cases in First Nations across the country continues to decline after reaching new highs in January, according to the latest data from Indigenous Services Canada.

As of Feb. 1, there were 2,228 active cases reported compared to 3,847 active cases a week prior.

However, new cases continue to be reported, primarily in the Prairies. Most recently, an outbreak in Pauingassi First Nation sparked a lockdown in the Manitoba community after a quarter of its members tested positive for COVID-19.

Since the pandemic started, there have been a total of 17,097 cases on-reserve. Twenty-two people living on-reserve have died from the virus since last week, bringing the death toll to 144. The total number of hospitalizations rose to 780. The number of First Nations people who have recovered from the disease is now at 14,703.

There have been a total of 42 COVID-19 cases in the Nunavik region of Quebec and all but 11 have recovered according to a Jan. 27 update. New cases were also reported in Arviat, Nunavut.

Total cases in First Nations communities per region reported as of Feb. 1:

  • British Columbia: 1,805
  • Alberta: 5,186
  • Saskatchewan: 4,472
  • Manitoba: 4,561
  • Ontario: 549
  • Quebec: 514
  • Atlantic: 10

Pandemic stories


What are the symptoms of COVID-19? 

  • new or worsening cough
  • shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
  • temperature equal to or over 38°C
  • feeling feverish
  • chills
  • fatigue or weakness
  • muscle or body aches
  • new loss of smell or taste
  • headache
  • gastrointestinal symptoms (abdominal pain, diarrhea, vomiting)
  • feeling very unwell

If you think you may have COVID-19, please consult your local health department to book an appointment at a screening clinic. 


CBC Indigenous is looking to hear from First Nations, Métis, and Inuit who have contracted COVID-19. If you would like to share your experience, please email us at indigenous@cbc.ca.

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