Coronavirus cases continue to increase in La Loche, 19 new cases in Saskatchewan

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The Far North of Saskatchewan remains the hot spot for new cases of coronavirus in the province.

Nineteen new cases were reported Thursday – 15 in the far north, 12 in the La Loche region – bringing the province’s total to 531.

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A Northern La Loche employee tested positive for the coronavirus, the store posted on Facebook.

The station said the employee last worked on May 4 and the store was closed.

All staff are tested for the coronavirus and any community member who may have been in contact with the employee will be notified, said Northern La Loche.

The company said the store will be “completely disinfected under the direction of Saskatchewan Public Health” and that the store will only reopen for pickup and delivery services once notified that public health authorities can do so. safely.

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The provincial government was questioned about the sufficient amount of food and cleaning supplies in La Loche at a press conference on Thursday.

“The Saskatchewan Public Safety Agency (SPSA) is sending 300 additional cleaning kits to La Loche. They should arrive [Friday]”, Read the statement provided by SPSA.

“SPSA has daily meetings with community leaders in the North West and will continue to work with these leaders to resolve emerging issues arising from COVID-19.”

The other four new cases have been reported in the north.

The number of active cases in the province stands at 196, of which 138 – 70% – in the far north.

Officials expected an increase in the number of cases in La Loche and surrounding communities due to active case finding and contact tracing.

“Today’s positive tests were from people who were exposed a week or two ago,” said Dr. Saqib Shahab, the province’s chief medical officer of health.

“The numbers from the tests we monitor every day show what is going on a week or two ago.”

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Shahab said that all interventions taken today will not be visible for 14 days.

“You have to look at what can be done today and how it will impact the future.

“A two-week period is a good yardstick for measuring the impact of any intervention.”

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The other regions with active cases are the north (39), Saskatoon 16) and Regina (3).

Twelve people are hospitalized – nine in Saskatoon and three in the north. Three people in Saskatoon and one in the north are in intensive care.

“We continue to see that our hospitalizations are more likely in older people, they are more likely in men,” said Shahad.

“This is very consistent with what is seen in the rest of the world. “

Six people in the province died from COVID-19.

Health officials have said that the epidemic at Lloydminster Hospital has stabilized and that the pause in phase 1 of the province’s reopening plan can continue in the city starting May 11.

“I think it relieves too many people in the community. I feel that there are also still concerns and I can understand that … [But] there are many people who say that we are healthy, the sun is shining. We would like to go out a little more, ”said Lloydminster Mayor Gerald Aalbers.

“Both sides of the border for our community are now opening at different times … [it’s] a unique relationship between customer and supplier. And I know they can move forward with a little patience from everyone. “

The province paused the first phase at Lloydminster on April 29 after a cluster of cases was reported to the hospital.

“I think people take it seriously. Some will not say it seriously enough, but the hospital was the scene of the cluster in particular. And there were one or two other cases in the city, which is understandable from this point of view. I think people realize that times are tough and we are just meeting these challenges, ”said Aalbers.

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“There is certainly optimism and concern. And again, I would have a percentage per se somehow. I think the optimism is significantly higher than the interested parties, but they both exist. And I think we have to take it into account … I think people have to realize that each community is unique, but it can also change in one way or another as we have seen. “

It has not yet been determined whether Lloydminster will go ahead with phase 2 of the reopening plan on May 19. The province said it will be determined by health officials and local leaders.

The Saskatchewan reopening plan has been suspended indefinitely in La Loche due to the epidemic there.

Here is a breakdown of Saskatchewan cases by age:

  • 71 people are 19 and under
  • 188 people are between 20 and 39 years old
  • 163 are 40 to 59
  • 93 people aged 60 to 79
  • 16 people are 80 and over

Men represent 50% of cases, women 50%.

Meanwhile, an additional 17 people recovered, bringing the total recovery to 329.

Authorities said 139 cases were related to travel, 231 were contacts with the community or related to mass gatherings, 53 had no known exposure and 108 were under investigation.

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To date, Saskatchewan has tested 34,361 for the virus, up 770 from Wednesday.

-With Thomas Piller files

Questions about COVID-19? Here are some things you should know:

Health authorities warn against all international travel. Returning travelers are legally required to isolate themselves for 14 days, beginning on March 26, in case they develop symptoms and prevent the spread of the virus to other people. Some provinces and territories have also implemented recommendations or additional enforcement measures to ensure the self-isolation of people returning to the region.

Symptoms may include fever, cough, and difficulty breathing – very similar to a cold or the flu. Some people may develop a more serious illness. Those most at risk are the elderly and those with serious chronic conditions such as heart, lung or kidney disease. If you develop symptoms, contact public health authorities.

To prevent the virus from spreading, experts recommend washing your hands frequently and coughing up your sleeve. They also recommend minimizing contact with others, staying at home as much as possible, and keeping two meters away from others if you go out.
For full COVID-19 coverage by Global News, click here.

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