March 30, 2020

Saskatchewan Records First COVID-19 Deaths

On Sunday, March 29, two Saskatchewan residents located in separate parts of the province died in hospital as a result of complications related to the COVID-19 virus.  The two fatalities represent the first deaths in Saskatchewan tied to the COVID-19 pandemic.

One was related to travel.  Both people were in their 70s.

As of March 30, 2020, the province of Saskatchewan has 20 new, confirmed cases of COVID-19, bringing the provincial total to 176.

Five people are in hospital across the province, including four in acute care and one in the intensive care unit (ICU):

  • One inpatient case is located in the north, and three in Saskatoon.
  • One ICU case is located in Regina.
  • At least eight cases are a result of local transmission.  The rest are travel-related or cluster-related due to exposure at mass gatherings.
  • Five cases concern individuals 19 years of age and under; all other cases are adults.
  • 80 cases are in the 20-44 age range; 62 are in the 45-64 range; and 29 are in the 65-plus range.
  • 55 per cent of the cases are males and 45 per cent are females.
  • Six more people have recovered from the virus, bringing the provincial total to 14.

There may be more cases yet to be reported to Public Health.

To date, 9,651 COVID-19 tests have been performed in Saskatchewan, an increase of 565 from yesterday’s update.

The province continues to be a national leader in testing, with an aggressive strategy aimed at identifying and preventing the spread of the virus as quickly and effectively as possible.  Case surveillance and testing information, including regional locations of confirmed/presumptive cases is available at www.saskatchewan.ca/COVID19.

Government Redeploying Staff to Focus on Priorities

The Government of Saskatchewan is taking steps to identify key skill sets in all ministries in an effort to deploy additional staff to critical function areas.  Supplemental resources are required to handle contact tracing needs, staff call centres and public inquiries.  The province will continue to allocate as many resources as possible to address the COVID-19 challenge.

The Saskatchewan Health Authority (SHA) already has up to 150 people involved in contact tracing.  Over the coming days, 50 additional staff from across government will be moved into this key role.  The need for additional resources will be assessed as the situation evolves.

Multiple Testing Sites Open Across the Province

As of March 30, there are more than 40 communities in Saskatchewan where COVID-19 testing is available.  Testing locations will continue to be expanded as demand warrants.  The current list of communities where testing is available can be found on www.saskatchewan.ca/COVID19 under Testing Information.  Testing is by referrals only.

If you are experiencing COVID-19-related symptoms (fever, cough or breathing issues), please use the online self-assessment tool at www.saskatchewan.ca/COVID19 and call 811 or your family physician.

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