Five new COVID cases in Sask., including one from the south

Saskatchewan has five new confirmed cases of COVID-19 as of May 22, bringing the provincial total to 627. Four of the new cases are in the Far North and one is in the South.

Of the 627 reported cases, 99 are considered active. Twelve more people have recovered, bringing the provincial total to 521.

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There are currently five people in hospital – two are receiving inpatient care (one in Saskatoon and one in Regina) and three are in intensive care (all in Saskatoon).

Of the 627 cases in the province, 40 cases are travellers; 349 are community contacts (including mass gatherings); 73 have no known exposures; 65 are under investigation by local public health; and 49 cases are health care workers; however, the source of the infections may not be related to health care in all instances.

Broken down by region, 248 of the cases are from the Far North, 165 are from the Saskatoon area, 110 from the North, 76 from the Regina area, 16 from the South and 12 from the Central region.

By age, 92 cases involve people 19 years of age and under; 223 cases are in the 20-39 age range; 190 are in the 40-59 age range; 104 are in the 60-79 age range; and 18 are in the 80-plus range.

About 51 per cent of the cases are females and 49 per cent are males. Seven deaths related to COVID-19 have been reported to date.

To date, 42,843 COVID-19 tests have been performed in the province. As of May 20, when other provincial and national numbers were available from the Public Health Agency of Canada, Saskatchewan’s per capita rate was 32,979 people tested per million population, while the national rate was 36,637 people tested per million population.

Guidance for Re-Open Phase 3 Online

Following the May 21 announcement that Re-Open Saskatchewan Phase 3 would begin June 8, guidance for restaurants, fitness facilities and other businesses and services opening is now availablewww.saskatchewan.ca/re-open.

Guidance on Non-Medical Cloth Masks for the General Public

While the primary driver of COVID-19 transmission is by people who are symptomatic, there is evidence that some COVID-19 infected people who never develop symptoms or are not yet sick are able to transmit the virus.

The Public Health Agency of Canada now recommends wearing a non-medical cloth mask in community settings (even if you have no symptoms) where physical distancing is not possible or is unpredictable, such as on public transit or in grocery stores.

• Avoid touching the mask – if you must adjust it, wash your hands afterward.

• Masks must not be shared with others.

• Put on and take off the mask with clean hands using the ear loops or ties, being careful not to touch your face.

• Non-medical masks or cloth face coverings should be washed after each use.

• Do not use face coverings on children under the age of two. A homemade mask does not replace public health measures that are proven to be effective.

The best way to prevent the spread of COVID-19 is to continue to stay home as much as possible; practise physical distancing; frequently wash your hands for at least 20 seconds with soap and water; and cover your cough or sneezes with tissues or your sleeve.

Further information on masks can be found on the Public Health Agency of Canada website at https://www.canada.ca/en/public-health/services/diseases/2019-novel-coronavirus-infection/prevention-risks/about-non-medical-masks-face-coverings.html.  

If you are experiencing symptoms of fever, cough or shortness of breath, contact HealthLine 811 or your family physician for advice on whether you should be tested for COVID-19. You can also take the online self-assessment at www.saskatchewan.ca/COVID19.

General public inquiries may be directed to COVID19@health.gov.sk.ca.