Doctor Kit Young Hoon at the health unit says new cases of COVID-19 aren't related to travel.

"It's very hard to say exactly where someone has contracted the illness from," she said, during last Friday's media briefing.

"Based on their symptom onset date, this is possibly due to interactions around the Christmas season," she said.

Young Hoon was answering questions about the possibility of cases coming in from Manitoba or Minnesota.

While there have been more cases in neighbouring jurisdictions, the health unit says the rise in cases in the Kenora and Rainy River Regions are most likely related to spread wtihin communities through holiday gatherings.

"Of the cases we've been seeing in the last little while, many of them are close contacts of previous cases," she said, underlining the importance of having household and close contacts of known cases tested.

During last Friday's media briefing, Young Hoon discounted theories that travelers from Manitoba or Minnesota were introducing COVID-19 into the district.

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