Coronavirus: Justin Trudeau's wife Sophie Grégoire tests positive; Canadian PM to continue self-isolation

The Prime Minister is in good health with no symptoms. As a precautionary measure and following the advice of doctors, he will be in isolation for a planned period of 14 days


                            Coronavirus: Justin Trudeau's wife Sophie Grégoire tests positive; Canadian PM to continue self-isolation
Justin Trudeau and Sophie Gregoire (Getty Images)
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Update: Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s wife has tested positive for the new coronavirus, his office announced on March 12.  It said Sophie Grégoire Trudeau was feeling well but would remain in isolation.

“The Prime Minister is in good health with no symptoms. As a precautionary measure and following the advice of doctors, he will be in isolation for a planned period of 14 days,” the statement added. His office said the doctor’s advice to the prime minister is to continue daily activities while self-monitoring, given that he is exhibiting no symptoms himself.

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“Also on the advice of doctors, he will not be tested at this stage since he has no symptoms. For the same reason, doctors say there is no risk to those who have been in contact with him recently,” the statement said.

The office said he would resume his duties Friday.

Trudeau’s wife issued a statement thanking those who have reached out.

“Although I’m experiencing uncomfortable symptoms of the virus, I will be back on my feet soon,” she said. “Being in quarantine at home is nothing compared to other Canadian families who might be going through this and for those facing more serious health concerns.”

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Though self-quarantining himself, the prime minister is spending the day in briefings, phone calls and virtual meetings from home, including speaking with other world leaders and joining a special Cabinet committee discussion on the coronavirus. Trudeau spoke with U.S. President Donald Trump and British Prime Minister Boris Johnson.

But Trudeau did cancel an in-person meeting with Canada’s provincial premiers.

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Original story follows below

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is quarantining himself at home after his wife exhibited flu-like symptoms.

“I have some personal news to share today. Sophie recently returned from a speaking event in the UK, and last night she was experiencing mild flu-like symptoms. She’s feeling better, but following the advice of our doctor she is self-isolating as we wait on COVID-19 test results,” wrote Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau on Twitter, Thursday (March 12).

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In a series of tweets, the 48-year-old leader of the Liberal Party wrote, “Out of an abundance of caution, I too will be self-isolating and self-monitoring until we get Sophie’s results back. But I‘ll be busy working from home. Today, I’ll be speaking with some world leaders and joining ministers for a Cabinet committee discussion on COVID-19.”

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He further said, “I was looking forward to sitting down with premiers and Indigenous leaders later today, but given the circumstances, we’ll be postponing our meeting. In the meantime, we‘ll speak on the phone about how we can mitigate the spread and impact of COVID-19 and keep Canadians safe.”

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According to the Associated Press, Trudeau’s office said the doctor's advice to the prime minister was to continue daily activities while self-monitoring, given that he had exhibited no symptoms himself. He is spending the day in briefings, phone calls, and virtual meetings from home, including speaking with other world leaders and joining a special cabinet committee discussion on the new coronavirus. 

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The report added that Opposition NDP leader Jagmeet Singh is also working from home after feeling unwell. Singh said he's been in contact with a doctor and they do not believe he has the virus but was advised to limit contact with the public until he feels better. 

As per Agence France-Presse, since the novel coronavirus first emerged in December 2019, more than 127,000 cases have been recorded in 115 countries and territories. The virus has so far killed 4,687 people. Canada has so far reported more than 100 cases in six provinces, and one death.

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On March 11, the World Health Organization (WHO) declared COVID-19 a pandemic. “This is not just a public health crisis, it is a crisis that will touch every sector,” said Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, WHO director-general, at a media briefing. “So every sector and every individual must be involved in the fights.”

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According to the Associated Press, Quebec Premier Francois Legault, meanwhile, has asked all people returning from travel abroad to self-isolate for 14 days. The measure will be mandatory for all government employees. He has also asked organizers to cancel all indoor events attracting crowds of more than 250 people and all other large gatherings that are not considered essential.

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(With inputs from AP)