Saskatchewan. monthly COVID-19 report shows increase: CMHO says keep it up with the basics
Saskatchewan officials said COVID-19 activity is increasing in the province following an epidemiological report released Thursday that shows there were 1,524 new cases and 27 deaths between July 17 and September 17. August 13.
According to the report, test positivity, outbreaks, hospital and intensive care admissions have all increased.
Dr Saqib Shahab says with the children returning to class and cold weather on the way, the situation could get worse.
“Intensive care and hospitals are on a slow upward trend, all of this suggests a slight upward trend that is continuing, which means we need to be more aware of what we need to do as individuals,” did he declare.
He said vaccines remain the best protection for individuals and for the healthcare system.
Currently, less than half of eligible people receive a booster and only 43% of school-aged children receive two doses, he added.
“Compared to the previous reporting period, test positivity increased from 4.0 to 7.4%,” the report said. “Central East and Saskatoon have the highest test positivity.”
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Health officials said emergency department visits for respiratory-like symptoms have increased in Regina and southeastern areas.
“Reported outbreaks in high-risk settings due to COVID-19 have increased,” the epidemiological report states. “COVID-19 hospital admissions and ICU admissions have increased.”
Reported deaths from COVID-19 in the province continue to average seven per week, officials said.
Shahab isn’t alone in calling for greater use of reminders, Saskatchewan nurses say.
“I talk every day with members from all over the province, especially people in the emergency room, and it’s been a nightmare,” said Tracy Zambory, president of the Saskatchewan Nurses Union.
She added that at the end of last year there were 600 nursing vacancies and currently there are nearly 700 nursing vacancies across the province as stress and burnout wreaks havoc.
She added that at the end of last year there were 600 nursing vacancies and there are currently nearly 700 nursing vacancies in the province as stress, burnout and depression take their toll.
She calls the shortage critical and asks the public to keep up to date with their vaccines and be as aware as possible of the progress of the pandemic.
Omicron is the dominant variant detected in Saskatchewan, with cases increasing from 3.6% in the week of June 19-25 to more than 65% in the week of June 26-July 16. Currently, Omicron accounted for more than 90% of detections.
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Over 22 million rapid antigen test kits have been distributed in Saskatchewan as of August 12.
“With approximately 45% of the population receiving at least three doses, more Saskatchewan residents need to receive their COVID-19 booster doses,” officials report. “As of August 15, people 18 and older are eligible for a second booster dose four months after their third dose. Vaccination remains the best protection against the serious consequences of COVID-19, including hospitalization and death.
The epidemiological report shows that there are 46 confirmed outbreaks, 10 in Saskatoon and four in the
Regina area. There are 488 hospital admissions including 27 to intensive care between July 17 and August 1. 13.
Dr Shahab suggested following precautionary measures on an individual level, such as staying home if you are not feeling well and staying up to date with vaccines.
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“Most people aged 13 and over get two doses, but it’s really important for them to get their first booster dose and more than half of those under 50 still haven’t gotten their first booster,” said he declared.
With children returning to school, uptake in school-aged children is only 43% for two doses, according to Shahab. “It is always important for parents to get their children vaccinated to help reduce cases.”
He added that mask use can be based on your own personal risk assessment.
“We all have to play our roles, choose to stay home, wear a mask if you’re at risk.”
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