REGINA -- The Saskatchewan government reported 48 new COVID-19 cases on Monday, along with 79 recoveries and two deaths.

The two people who died were both in the 80-plus age group. One was from the Northwest zone and the other was from the North Central zone.

The new cases are in the Far Northwest (five); Far Northeast (one); Northwest (three); North Central (10); Saskatoon (six); Central West (two); Regina (15); South Central (three); and Southeast (one) zones. Two cases are pending residence location information.

 

Key indicators continue to drop in Saskatchewan. The seven-day average of new cases is 69 – the lowest it’s been since Oct. 31. There are 711 active cases in the province, another number Saskatchewan hasn’t seen since late October.

Hospitalizations are also steadily trending downwards. There are 76 COVID-19 patients in hospital across the province, which is the lowest since Nov. 18. Eleven of those patients are receiving ICU care in the North Central (two); Saskatoon (four); Central East (one); and Regina (four) zones.

VACCINES

The province added 961 vaccinations to Saturday’s tally on Monday.

In a release, the government said the vaccine numbers appeared lower on Monday because it returned to a 48-hour reporting time frame for vaccinations after shifting to a 24-hour reporting period on Friday, Saturday and Sunday “in order to provide the most up to date information to support a decision on the ability to move to Step 3 of the Re-Open Roadmap.”

According to data from the government, 70 per cent of people was 18 and older have their first dose, along with 69 per cent of people age 12 and older.

 

VARIANTS OF CONCERN

The province said 16 more COVID-19 cases were identified as variants of concern, bringing the total number of variant cases in the province to 11,971.

Of the 6,814 variant cases with identified lineages, 6,417 are Alpha (B.1.1.7), 282 are Gamma (P.1), 105 are Delta (B.1.617.2) and 10 are Beta (B.1.351). 

2ND DOSE ELIGIBILITY

Starting 8 a.m. Monday morning, second doses of the COVID-19 vaccine will be available for anyone in the province who got their first dose on of before May 15.

Everyone who has a first dose will be eligible to receive a second after 28 days on Thursday.

MASK MANDATE ENDS JULY 11

All public health restrictions – including the mask mandate and gathering limits – will be lifted in Saskatchewan on July 11.

The government made the announcement Sunday as 70 per cent of people age 18 and older and 69 per cent of people 12 and older have their first shot.

The province had said it will lift the mask mandate and restrictions on gathering limits three weeks after 70 per cent of people age 12 and older have received their first dose.

In a video posted on Twitter, Premier Scott Moe said the province will hit the final threshold in the next few days.

STEP 2 UNDERWAY

Saskatchewan began the second phase of its reopening plan Sunday as certain public health measures loosened across the province.

Step 2, which was triggered when 70 per cent of people age 30 and older got their first dose, will see capacity limits in stores lifted and restaurants will no longer have a limit on the number of people allowed to sit together at a table.

Fifteen people will now be allowed at private indoor gatherings. There will be a 150 person limit at public and private outdoor gatherings.

Step 3 of Saskatchewan’s reopening plan will go ahead on July 11 after the province hit its vaccination target Saturday.