The provincial Health Department is working to clear a backlog of requests for COVID-19 testing. Demand has been increasing since a significant outbreak of cases late last week pushed both the Saint John and Moncton regions back to the Orange Level with more restrictions. Both regions remain at Level Orange.

Three new cases have been reported today – two in the Saint John region in their 50’s and 70’s with one of them at the Shannex Parkland complex in Millidgeville. The third is in the Bathurst Acadia Peninsula area. That person is in their 30’s and the case is travel related. There are 94-active cases in the province with one person admitted to hospital.

Health Minister Dorothy Shephard says a glitch with the online registration for testing earlier in the week contributed to the backlog of request – but – efforts to clear the bottleneck are working.

Health Minister Dorothy Shephard on backlog of testing requests

Just under 1100 tests have been processed in the last 24-hours. Meantime – Shephard says the Regional Health Authorities are struggling with staffing shortages due to workers self-isolating due to potential exposure to the virus.

Seven deaths related to the COVID-19 virus have been reported in the province since the pandemic was declared in March.