The provincial government launched a new COVID-19 map on Tuesday designed to provide a more accurate picture of where new cases are popping up.
The map includes statistical data for 13 regions in Saskatchewan. Previous maps showed only six.
Prince Albert is now part of the North Central Region, which has seven active cases according to government data. Melfort is now part of the Northeast Region, which has 31 active cases, while North Battleford and Lloydminster are now part of the Northwest Region, which has 22 active cases. All four communities were previously grouped together in the North Region.
A fifth community, Meadow Lake, was also formerly part of the North. Cases in that community are now included in the Far Northwest. The communities of Beauval and La Loche are also included in that region. There are four active cases in that area.
The Far North has been broken into three new areas: the Far Northwest, Far Northeast and Far North Central. There are no active cases in the latter two regions.
Cases in Humboldt were previously included as part of the Saskatoon area. The community is now part of the Central East Region, along with Yorkton and Melville. That region has three active cases.
In previous reports, the West Central and East Central areas were combined into one region. On Monday, there were 81 active cases in the area. However, the new data map shows almost all of those cases are in the west.
The new Central West area, which includes Kindersley, shows 75 active cases. That’s the highest total out of any of the 13 new regions.
The south has also been broken down into three new regions. The Southwest Region shows the highest number of active cases, with 36, while the South Central area has 33. There are five active cases in the Southeast Region.
Both the Regina and Saskatoon regions are significantly smaller under the new system. They’re showing 13 and 24 active cases respectively.
Health officials reported nine new COVID-19 cases on Tuesday, one of which was in the North Central area. Regina had the most new cases with four, followed by Saskatoon with two. The Northwest and Southwest regions had one new case each.
There are currently 253 cases considered active in Saskatchewan.
There have been 1,368 cases reported since the start of the pandemic, 108 of which are still under investigation by local public health officials.
COVID-19 testing is now available to anyone who requests it, regardless of whether or not they have symptoms. Residents can get a referral by contacting HealthLine 811.
Health zone breakdown shows one active case in Prince Albert
The provincial government also introduced a new Active Cases by Health Zone map, which breaks down each of the 13 regions into anywhere from two to four zones. Prince Albert is listed as “North Central Zone 2” and shows only one active COVID-19 case.
“North Central Zone 1” has six active cases, one of which was a new case first reported on Tuesday. Zone one is mostly made up of communities to the north of Prince Albert, like Big River, Candle Lake, Christopher Lake, Meath Park, Waskesiu and Debden. It also includes Shellbrook and Birch Hills.
“North Central Zone 3” includes communities south of Prince Albert, such as Duck Lake, Rosthern, Wakaw and St. Louis. There are no active cases in that zone.
A total of 165 active cases are located in just five zones. The largest is Central West 1, which has 46 active cases, none of which are new. Central West 2 is also in that group of five. It has 29 active cases, none of which are new.
The remaining three zones have 30 active cases each. They are Southwest 1, South Central 1, and Northeast 2.
Northeast 2 includes the communities of Melfort, Beatty, Kinistino, Naicam, Pleasantdale, St. Brieux, Star City, Valparaiso and Weldon. Health officials reported no new cases in that area on Tuesday.
A complete breakdown is available on the provincial government’s COVID-19 webpage.