First monthly COVID-19 report shows increase in cases

Graphic courtesy HFCM Communicatie, via Wikimedia This is a representation of what the Covid-19 virus would look like under a powerful microscope.

The COVID-19 integrated epidemiological (EPI) report released on Thursday showed a trend of increases in hospitalizations related to COVID-19, as well as in overall cases. Numbers were reported between June 26 to July 16.

This report was part of the transition to monthly reports on COVID-19 numbers by the province and covered a three week period.

The first monthly report will be released on August 18 (with a reporting period of July 17 to August 13).

COVID-19 activity is increasing in the province of Saskatchewan. Compared to the previous reporting period (June 19-25), test positivity increased from 3.8 to 4.0 per cent. Regina, Saskatoon, South West, Central West and North West zones all have test positivity above five per cent with the largest increases occurring in South West and Central West zones

There were 22 deaths reported over this time. Of the 22 deaths reported, 14 had a death date within the June 26 to July 16 period. Eight occurred between Sept. 5 to June 25 that had not been previously reported as COVID deaths.

The province has also changed the way the report is delivered so comparisons to previous weekly reports are not easily reflected.

It is not known how many deaths occurred in North Central over this time period. The majority of the deaths were in the 60 plus age group according to a graph in the report.

The report shows 229 hospital admissions, which is 76.3 per week and 15 ICU admissions, which is five per week.

This was among 628 total cases confirmed in the province. These are only lab confirmed cases and not rapid antigen test confirmed cases. That’s a test positivity rate of roughly 4.0.

The province warns that rates should be interpreted with caution because they do not include cases detected by home rapid-antigen test kits.

The Omicron sublineages BA.4/BA.5 are now the dominant sublineages detected in Saskatchewan. BA.4 and BA.5 have increased from 1.4 per cent ( June 5-11) to 3.6 per cent ( June 19-25) to 65.6 per cent (June 26-July 16).

The province reported three new outbreaks in Long Term Care, care homes and personal care homes. Locations of the outbreaks are no longer reported.

While more than 90 per cent of residents 50 years and older and more than 80 per cent of residents 12 to 49 years have received two doses of COVID-19 vaccine, all residents 12 years and older are eligible for third doses and residents 50 years and older are eligible for fourth doses.