An additional 6,218 doses of COVID-19 vaccine have been given in Saskatchewan, bringing the total number of vaccines administered in the province to 421,981.
The 6,218 doses of COVID-19 vaccine reported today were administered to residents living in the following zones: Far Northwest, 130; Far North Central, 2; Far Northeast, 112; Northwest, 530; North Central, 487; Northeast, 238; Saskatoon, 1,605; Central West, 220; Central East, 411; Regina, 1,313; Southwest, 190; South Central, 70; and Southeast, 592. There were 318 doses administered with zone of residence pending.
More than eighty per cent of Saskatchewan residents over age 60 have received their first dose. Sixty per cent of those 40-plus have received their first dose. Forty per cent of those 18-plus have received their first dose.
Vaccination Booking System Opening to Ages 40-plus Tomorrow
Effective 8 a.m. tomorrow, eligibility in the provincial age-based immunization program moves to age 40, except for the Northern Saskatchewan Administration District, where it remains age 30 and older. This applies to all immunization clinics: booked appointments, drive-thru/walk-in, pharmacies and mobile clinics.
Once COVID-19 vaccine eligibility has been opened to all residents ages 40 and over, remaining prioritized front-line workers (including firefighters, educational staff working with students, correctional staff and border security officers and front-line health care workers with direct patient contact) will also become eligible. Notice of eligibility is being provided to regulatory bodies and associations. To confirm that you are included in this front-line worker category, call 1-833-SaskVax (1-833-727-5829) or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Please remember demand for appointments outweighs current available supply. Additional clinics will be added as new vaccine shipments are received.
Appointments can be made online at www.saskatchewan.ca/COVID19. People who do not have a cell phone or email account, need assistance in booking, or are providing documentation for priority eligibility status must book by calling 1-833-SaskVax (1-833-727-5829). Additional information on how to book your appointment is available at www.saskatchewan.ca/covid19-vaccine-booking.
Please do not call until you are eligible to book your vaccination appointment.
Individuals who experience a severe or unusual reaction after getting a COVID-19 vaccination can report it by calling 811. Anyone experiencing a severe reaction such as difficulty breathing should call 911. Any adverse event that may be related to a vaccination is reported in order to continuously monitor the safety of vaccines.
Daily COVID-19 Statistics
There are 205 new cases of COVID-19 to report in Saskatchewan April 29, bringing the provincial total to 40,824 cases. Five Saskatchewan residents tested out-of-province have been added to the counts for the following zones: Far Northeast, 3; Central West, 1; and Southwest, 1.
One new death is reported today in the 80-plus age group from the Northwest zone.
The new cases are located in the following zones: Far Northwest, 16; Far Northeast, 1; Northwest, 11; North Central, 4; Northeast, 3; Saskatoon, 32; Central West, 2; Central East, 11; Regina, 73; Southwest, 9; South Central, 13; and Southeast, 24. Six new cases are pending residence information. Six cases pending residence information have been assigned to the following zones: North Central, 1; Regina, 3; and South Central, 2.
Recoveries total 37,929 and 2,408 cases are considered active.
There are 186 people in hospital. One hundred forty-eight people are receiving inpatient care: Far Northeast, 1; Northwest, 6; North Central, 7; Saskatoon, 58; Central East, 7; Regina, 56; Southwest, 1; South Central, 3; and Southeast, 9. Thirty-eight people are in intensive care: Northwest, 1; North Central, 2; Saskatoon, 10; Central East, 2; Regina, 22; and South Central, 1.
The seven-day average of new COVID-19 case number is 239 (19.5 new cases per 100,000). A chart comparing today’s average to data collected over the past few months is available at https://dashboard.saskatchewan.ca/health-wellness/covid-19/seven-day-average-of-new-covid-cases.
There were 3,306 COVID-19 tests processed in Saskatchewan April 28.
To date, 765,871 COVID-19 tests have been processed in Saskatchewan. As of April 27, 2021, when other provincial and national numbers were available, Saskatchewan’s per capita rate was 642,810 tests performed per million population. The national rate was 820,235.
As of April 28, 6,572 variants of concern have been identified by screening in Saskatchewan, reported in the following zones: Far Northwest, 96; Far Northeast, 3; Northwest, 185; North Central, 104; Northeast, 14; Saskatoon, 730; Central West, 81; Central East, 290; Regina, 3,632; Southwest, 178; South Central, 496; and Southeast, 682. There are 81 screened VOCs with residence pending.
There are 87 new lineage results reported today. Of the 2,392 VOCs with lineages identified by whole genome sequencing in Saskatchewan, 2,362 are B.188.8.131.52 (UK), 21 are P.1 (Brazilian) and nine are B.1.351 (SA). The Regina zone accounts for 1,607 (67 per cent) of the VOC cases with confirmed lineage reported in Saskatchewan.
Please note these VOCs may have been initially identified by means other than screening (i.e. selection for whole genome sequencing without screening). Whole genome sequencing results to identify lineage are included in the screening results. Confirmed variant of concern cases may appear in both columns on the website, depending on testing for that case. Adding the cases identified by screening and those that have received whole genome sequencing may result in double-counting individual cases.
Further statistics on the total number of cases among health care workers, breakdowns of total cases by source of infection, age, sex and region, total tests to date, per capita testing rate and current numbers of confirmed variants of concern can be found at http://www.saskatchewan.ca/covid19-cases.
Expanded Visitation to Eligible Long-Term and Personal Care Homes
Effective today, visitor (family presence) restrictions will ease in some long-term and personal care homes.
This will only be allowed if 90 per cent of residents have been fully vaccinated, three weeks after second doses are completed and considering the local COVID-19 context (eg. community transmission, cases within a facility). Saskatchewan Health Authority Medical Health Officers will have discretion to maintain restrictions to protect homes from potential risks of exposure. This is a gradual, cautious approach to help keep residents safe, and allow limited and much-needed social contact and support for care needs.
There will be no limit on the total number of designated family members/supports that residents can have, but only two may visit indoors at a time. Four visitors at a time will be allowed outdoors. If a fully-vaccinated resident goes on an outing, they will no longer be required to quarantine following their return.
Residents that are not vaccinated can have visits from fully vaccinated family members/supports. If the designated family members/supports are not vaccinated, family presence will continue to be permitted for compassionate care reasons only.
There are many long-term and personal care homes throughout the province with small resident populations that may not be able to meet the visitor restriction threshold of 90 per cent of residents vaccinated if even one resident is unable to receive immunization. As a result, there will be flexibility for long-term and personal care homes with fewer than 10 residents.
In homes with 10 or fewer residents, all but one resident must be fully vaccinated (both doses).
In all cases, before visitor restrictions can be amended, at least three weeks must have passed since the last second doses were received.
The list of SHA-operated long-term care homes currently eligible for family visitation is available at https://www.saskhealthauthority.ca/news/service-alerts-emergency-events/Pages/service-alerts.aspx. Restrictions will be reviewed weekly.
Personal care homes are expected to meet the same requirements. Family of those residing in personal care homes will need to contact those homes to determine if they are currently able to safely support family visitation.
Based on community transmission risk, long-term and personal care homes in the City of Regina, Emerald Park, Lumsden and Cupar will remain at Level 3 (two family members/supports can be present at the same time for end of life care only; one essential family member/support person can be designated to assist with care if needed). If a home is currently in an outbreak or suspect outbreak, family presence will be restricted to Level 3. Additional family presence can be supported for specific circumstances including critical care or intensive care units and maternal, postpartum or pediatric units. In areas where there are concerns with community transmission, these homes may remain restricted to compassionate care family presence (two family members/supports can be designated to support end of life, and quality of life or care needs unmet). For more details on levels of family presence in care settings, visit www.saskatchewan.ca/government/health-care-administration-and-provider-resources/treatment-procedures-and-guidelines/emerging-public-health-issues/2019-novel-coronavirus/public-health-measures/guidance-for-health-care-facilities.
Re-Open Saskatchewan Plan Clarified for Graduations
Outdoor graduations are limited to 30 guests (assuming two guests per graduate for a total of 45 graduates and guests), with an additional maximum of five teachers/support staff. Virtual graduations are permitted with no more than 30 graduates attending in-person and all guests attending virtually.
All other public health measures must be followed, including maintaining a minimum of two metres of physical distancing between household groups. No food or beverages are permitted.
The guidance for graduations for the month of June will be re-evaluated on May 17, 2021. Guidance will be reviewed based on the COVID-19 situation in the province, including positive cases and the rates of immunization. Planned events and activities must abide by the guidance in place at the time of the event/activity.
More details are available at: www.saskatchewan.ca/government/health-care-administration-and-provider-resources/treatment-procedures-and-guidelines/emerging-public-health-issues/2019-novel-coronavirus/re-open-saskatchewan-plan/guidelines/graduation-guidelines.
Public Health Measures
Due to increased COVID-19 transmission risk throughout the province, the Chief Medical Health Officer has extended all current provincial public health orders until May 10, 2021. The orders will be reviewed at that time. Full details on current public health measures can be found at www.saskatchewan.ca/covid19-measures.
All residents are urged to adhere to best personal protective measures:
– Wear your mask in all public places including all workplaces.
– Wash non-medical masks daily.
– Maintain physical distancing.
– Wash your hands frequently.
– Reduce activities outside of your home. Order take-out or curbside pick-up. Work from home if you are able to do so.
– Avoid all unnecessary travel throughout the province at this time.
If you have any symptoms, stay home and arrange for a COVID-19 test. If anyone in your home has symptoms, the entire household should remain home until the test results are known. Testing information is available at www.saskatchewan.ca/government/health-care-administration-and-provider-resources/treatment-procedures-and-guidelines/emerging-public-health-issues/2019-novel-coronavirus/testing-information.
Weekly Reporting of Testing Numbers and Cases for Youth
The trends of COVID-19 cases in school-aged children are being monitored. The weekly report of cases and testing numbers for children aged 0-19, including data by age and positivity rates, has been posted at www.saskatchewan.ca/COVID19-Safe-Schools-Plan.
General COVID-19 Information
General public inquiries may be directed to COVID19@health.gov.sk.ca.
Know your risk. Keep yourself and others safe: www.saskatchewan.ca/government/health-care-administration-and-provider-resources/treatment-procedures-and-guidelines/emerging-public-health-issues/2019-novel-coronavirus/about-covid-19/know-your-risk.