Province reports 4 more COVID-19 cases in Sask.’s far north

Premier Scott Moe. (Government of Saskatchewan/Screenshot)

Updated as of 4:20 p.m., Wednesday, May 13.

The number of COVID-19 cases contributing to an outbreak in Saskatchewan’s northwest grew by four on Wednesday.

All of the new cases are in the La Loche area. The far north has 149 of the province’s 186 active cases, while the southern region has very few, in some areas zero, active cases.

“The situation (in the far north) appears to be improving. This virus continues to spread, however, throughout the far north, but it is spreading at a much slower pace than it was a week ago or 10 days ago,” said Premier Scott Moe.

Just nine days ago, on the first day of the Re-Open Saskatchewan Plan, the province reported 34 new cases of the virus—29 of them were in the far north.

Chief Medical Health Officer Dr. Saqib Shahab said the outbreak’s downward trend is thanks to support by northern leaders and health officials, the Saskatchewan Health Authority and the Saskatchewan Public Safety Agency, to name a few.

“This shows that with determination and a coordinated effort, it can be overcome,” he said.

The provincial state of emergency has been extended for another two weeks. Moe initially declared a state of emergency due to COVID-19 on Mar. 18, and has extended it four times since.

One case that was previously reported as in the Regina area has been reassigned to the north. Shahab said this is because the patient was diagnosed in Regina, but is from the northern part of the province.

The province saw 11 more recoveries. In total, 385 people have recovered so far.

Ten people are in hospital with COVID-19 complications. Seven are receiving inpatient care, four in the north and three in Saskatoon, and three additional people in Saskatoon are in intensive care.

In total—including active cases, recoveries and deaths—the province has 577 cases of COVID-19.

Of the total number of cases in Saskatchewan:

• 139 cases are travellers, 297 are community contacts (including mass gatherings), 65 have no known exposures and 76 are under investigation by local public health.

• 48 cases are health care workers; however, the source of the infections are not related to their work in all instances.

• 206 of the cases are from the far north, 163 are from the Saskatoon area, 106 are from the north, 75 are from the Regina area, 15 are from the south and 12 are from the central region.

• 79 cases involve people 19 years of age and under, 204 cases are in the 20-39 age range, 179 are in the 40-59 age range, 98 are in the 60-79 age range and 17 are in the 80-plus range.

• 50 per cent of the cases are females and 50 per cent are males.

• Six deaths related to COVID-19 have been reported to date.