Public Health Measures extended to April 12

(File photo/Jayda Taylor)

The province announced Tuesday that Chief Medical Health Officer Dr. Saqib Shahab is extending the provincial public health orders announced Tuesday, March 9 and the Regina and area revisions announced Tuesday, March 24.

The orders will remain in effect until April 12 and be reviewed at that time.

Due to the increased COVID-19 transmission risk in Regina and area, revisions were made March 24 including: restricting private indoor gatherings to immediate household members only; all restaurants and licensed establishments must close for in-person dining; and most event venues supporting 30 persons or less are not permitted to operate.

As well travel is also not recommended in or out of the Regina area unless absolutely necessary. It is strongly recommended that all individuals in the Regina area able to work from home do so.

One death related to COVID-19 reported Tuesday

One death related to COVID-19 was reported in the province on Tuesday.

The death was in the 80 plus age group and located in the Central East region.

The number of deaths related to COVID-19 in the province is currently 434.

There was cases of COVID-19 reported in North Central, which includes Prince Albert, on Tuesday.

This was among a total of 164 cases reported in the province on Monday. Regina led the province with 91 cases reported.

North Central 2, which is Prince Albert, has 38 active cases.

North Central 1, which includes communities such as Christopher Lake, Candle Lake and Meath Park, has 21 active cases and North Central 3 has 25 active cases.

There are currently 160 people in hospital overall in the province. Of the 138 reported as receiving in patient care there are eight in North Central. Of the 22 people reported as being in intensive care there is one in North Central.

The current seven-day average 201, or 14.7 cases per 100,000 population.

Of the 33,399 reported COVID-19 cases in Saskatchewan, 1,942 are considered active.

The recovered number now sits at 31,023 after 201 more recoveries were reported.

The total number of cases since the beginning of the pandemic is 33,399 of those 8,069 cases are from the North area (3,270 North West, 3,490 North Central and 1,309 North East).

There were 3,301 COVID-19 tests processed in Saskatchewan on March 24.

As of today there have been 662,471 COVID-19 tests performed in Saskatchewan.

There were 4,636 doses of COVID-19 vaccine administered yesterday in Saskatchewan bringing the total number of vaccines administered in the province to 184,436.

There were no doses administered in the North Central reported. Doses were administered in the Far North East, North West, Central East, South Central, South East, Regina and Saskatoon.

Starting March 31 at 8 a.m., the appointment booking system will be available to residents 60 years of age and older.

The latest shipments of Pfizer vaccine are expected in Saskatchewan in the coming days. Saskatoon and Regina should arrive on March 30 , while Prince Albert, North Battleford and Yorkton are expected on March 31.

Four variants of concern identified in North Central

There were four confirmed variants of concern (VOC) cases identified by the province in the North Central zone, which includes Prince Albert, on March 29.

This was among 1,575 variants of concern identified by screening in Saskatchewan. Other regions with identified cases included Regina, Far North East, Central West, Central Easr, South West, South Central, South East and Saskatoon.

Regina led the province with 1,298 identified.

These have previously been reported as “presumptive positives” but all screening tests will be considered confirmed VOCs for the purposes of public reporting and contact investigations.

There was one new lineage results reported today. Of the 495 VOCs with lineages identified by whole genome sequencing in Saskatchewan, 487 are B1.1.1.7 (UK) and eight are B1.351 (SA).

The Regina zone accounts for 410 (or 84 per cent) of the VOC cases with confirmed lineage reported in Saskatchewan.

Please note that these VOC may have been initially identified via means other than screening (i.e. selection for whole genome sequencing without screening) and that whole genome sequencing results to identify lineage are included in the screening results.”

The province has also noted VOC are beginning to rise across southern Saskatchewan particularly in the Moose Jaw area and Moose Jaw residents are urged to adhere to best personal protective measures.

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Michael Oleksyn covers regional civic affairs including RMs, city council and local school divisions. He can be reached at 306-764-4276 ext 230. His position was made possible by funding through the Local Journalism Initiative. We acknowledge the financial support of the Government of Canada. Nous reconnaissons l'appui financier du gouvernement du Canada.