All of Saskatchewan’s COVID-19 indicators heading upward, says Shahab

Saskatchewan has continued to show exponential growth in its seven-day average new COVID-19 case numbers, while over the past two weeks Manitoba has flattened its seven-day average and North Dakota has seen their curve decline. On Nov. 26, Saskatchewan hit 243 average new cases per day, a doubling from just 16 days before.

Asked about this, Saskatchewan’s Chief Medical Health Officer Dr. Saqib Shahab said, “We must look at weekly averages, and all our indicators are still trending upwards.”

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He noted that 243 average cases per day equates to 20 cases per 100,000 people. 

“I said everything above 10 is cause for concern and you have to take action. Our test positive rate is 7.2,” he said, referring to what percentage of tests come back positive for COVID-19.

“These numbers are heading in the wrong direction. We have had a few days with much higher cases. Some days are lower cases. Some days, like today, may be in part due to enhanced testing, for example in long-term care facilities,” Shahab said.

He noted enhanced testing from investigations due to an outbreak will generate additional cases.

“But nevertheless, I think there’s no doubt that our overall case numbers are unsustainable. They are leading us into dangerous territory. And if our case numbers don’t stabilize over the next two weeks, further restrictive measures will be required,” Shahab concluded.