Peak of Sask. Omicron wave still 2 to 4 weeks away: Health officials
The Omicron wave in Saskatchewan is expected to peak in the next two to four weeks, according to the province’s top doctor.
“Apart from school or work, we need to really minimize our non-essential contacts for the next two to four weeks,” Dr. Saqib Shahab, Saskatchewan’s chief medical health officer, said during a press conference Tuesday.
“That is going to be critical because once the hospitalizations peak, that is going to be due to exposures that happened two to three weeks earlier.”
Shahab indicated that hospitalization rates are not expected to peak for around six weeks —approximately two weeks after the case peak.
“While we expect to peak in case numbers over the next two to four weeks, starting in Regina and Saskatoon and continuing to rural and northern areas, hospitalizations peak after a one to two week lag,” said Shahab. “So, unfortunately, we will see hospitalizations increase for another six weeks.”
As of Tuesday there are 171 people in hospital related to COVID-19, with 17 of those receiving intensive care.
Saskatchewan’s test positivity rate was nearly 40 per cent province wide on Monday and nearly 30 per cent on Tuesday. Shahab said the province’s test positivity peak will likely coincide with the peak of the Omicron wave.
“As the test positivity rate goes high and then starts coming down, that’s a good indication an area has peaked,” Shahab said.
“We fully expect parts of the province that have a high test positivity rate, such as the urban areas and further south, to start coming down first, because we started to see the Omicron surge there earlier.”
However, the positivity rate only accounts for those who have taken a PCR test and not just a rapid test.
Shahab said with somewhere between 3,000 and 4,000 PCR tests being administered each day as of late, the current self isolation rules regarding rapid testing will remain in place.
The isolation protocol will help prioritize PCR tests for the most vulnerable and those with symptomatic cases.
“Because we have such high testing numbers, 3,000 or 4,000 people getting tested with PCR everyday. We want to optimize PCR testing for those who are symptomatic, especially those who are older, and have underlying health risk factors, because then that can link them to additional therapies or better management of the underlying conditions as well,” said Shahab.
When it comes to the Omicron peak, Shahab said reaching out to other testing providers can also help the province determine when the Omicron surge will peak and start to decrease.
“We are trying to reach out to other providers of testing, beta testing for example and travel, because they have also seen an increase in test positivity rates from less than one per cent to three or four per cent,” he said.
“That’s obviously not as high as nearly 40 per cent, but they’re testing people who are travelling and otherwise feeling well, so all those pieces of information are important pieces to help us track when Omicron is going to peak in the community.”
The province again reiterated how important it is to stay home from work or school when not feeling well and to get tested.
Tuesday saw another 1,089 cases announced, the test positivity number remained high at close to 30 per cent.
Regina Top Stories
CTVNews.ca Top Stories
LIVE COVERAGE | 'My little love is now flying high': Families pay tribute to Texas school shooting victims
Families are sharing photos and stories of their loved ones, who lost their lives in a mass shooting in Texas that killed at least 19 children and two adults on Tuesday afternoon.
A news conference about the shooting at a Texas elementary school broke into shouting Wednesday as Democratic gubernatorial candidate Beto O'Rourke blamed Republican Gov. Greg Abbott for inaction ahead of the latest in a long string of mass shootings in the state.
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau cancelled plans to appear in person at a Liberal fundraiser in British Columbia Tuesday after RCMP warned an aggressive protest outside the event could escalate if he arrived, said a source close to the decision. The source spoke to The Canadian Press on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to discuss the situation publicly.
The gunman who massacred 19 children and two teachers at an elementary school in Texas had warned in online messages minutes before the attack that he had shot his grandmother and was going to shoot up a school, the governor said Wednesday.
Do oil companies control the price of crude? CTVNews.ca asked experts to explain.
Several parts of the country, including British Columbia and Canada's Maritime provinces, are likely to see wetter-than-normal conditions this summer, according to AccuWeather's annual summer forecast.
The six candidates on the ballot to be the next leader of the Conservative Party of Canada are debating face-to-face in French, in Laval, Que.
A jury in Portland has convicted a self-published romance novelist - who once wrote an essay titled 'How to Murder Your Husband' - of fatally shooting her husband four years ago.
The Public Health Agency of Canada says it has now confirmed a total of 16 cases of monkeypox in the country, all in Quebec.
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has announced $32 million in funding for long term care in Saskatchewan.
Saskatoon Police Service says that the use and presence of potent new synthetic opioids known as nitazenes are difficult to track and monitor.
A 48-year-old semi-truck driver was killed in in a rollover near Meadow Lake on Tuesday.
The Manitoba Government could turn to the military for help as it struggles with staffing shortages, overcrowding, and in some cases, temporary closures of emergency rooms.
The Manitoba government says it is planning to make alcohol sales more convenient, which the opposition says sounds like privatization.
Officers with the Manitoba RCMP are investigating after a 75-year-old man was found dead in the water near a culvert.
Those who haven't receive their bill by the first week of June are asked to contact 311.
Milan Lucic is a veteran of 135 Stanley Cup playoff games and has seen it all through the years. He's been up three games to none in a series and lost. He's also been up three games to one and had to play a seventh game.
The mayor of Calgary says the increase in local gun violence and hate-based crimes needs to be addressed and it's past time the public demand better of its elected officials.
Even though they cheer for opposite teams, a proposal by a Flames fan at Game 4 of the Battle of Alberta received a resounding "yes" from the Oilers-loving bride to be.
"Blunt force injuries" have been determined as the cause of death for both men attacked in Edmonton's Chinatown on May 19.
Alberta's justice minister is facing criticism for "strange" and "remarkably unhelpful" comments he made in the legislature on Tuesday when an NDP MLA asked him to help fight crime in Chinatown.
Was your home damaged by the Ontario storm? Insurance companies say payouts could take weeks to process
The insurance industry says it could take up to six weeks to get an idea of how many hundreds of millions of dollars in pay outs will be required from the weekend storm that brought death and destruction to Ontario and Quebec, but that early estimates are substantial.
Police have released new video of a recent incident in which a vehicle was caught doing doughnuts and speeding along the shoulder of busy Ontario roadways.
People all across Ontario are getting creative when it comes to netting a secondary income, otherwise known as a “side hustle,” and many are turning to secondhand economies thriving on online platforms.
The president of Hydro Ottawa says "with a little bit of luck" power will be restored along the Merivale Road area on Thursday, bringing power to another 15,000 to 20,000 customers still in the dark following Saturday's storm.
The Ottawa Catholic School Board says all schools with power will be open on Thursday, but 14 schools without power will remain closed.
Out of the tragedy of Saturday’s storm, come stories of people helping each other.
Ryan Reynolds shared some of what it was like growing up in Vancouver in a new interview with David Letterman this week, including the fact that he said he was going out to get gas when what he was really doing was moving to Los Angeles.
B.C. committee recommends honorary degree given to principal of former residential school be rescinded
A sub-committee formed by the University of British Columbia has recommended the honorary degree granted to a former principal of a residential school where unmarked graves were detected last year be rescinded.
B.C. woman's 'elaborately concocted alibi' for hit-and-run included fake letters, false accusations, court says
A B.C. woman who was convicted of a fatal hit-and-run despite her "elaborately concocted alibi" which included forged letters and lying about her truck being stolen by a panhandler, has lost her bid to have her sentence reduced.
Quebec politicians were not pleased with the federal Liberals' comments on Bill 96 and Bill 21, firing back with a slew of protests and even raising sovereignty as the solution.
Quebec's public health department is set to give its first press conference on the growing monkeypox outbreak as the province recorded its 16th confirmed case Wednesday.
Montreal police says it is working to dismantle a 'major amphetamine trafficking and production network.'
Authorities are investigating Wednesday after the body of a porpoise was discovered on a beach near Victoria.
The only family medical practice in Ucluelet, B.C., will continue to operate for another 18 months, Island Health announced Wednesday, just one week before the clinic's lease was set to expire.
A British Columbia company that was once at the forefront of the booming plant-based meats industry is shuttering stores and production plants as it struggles to survive.
As the inquiry into Nova Scotia’s mass shooting moves its public proceedings to Truro, many of the family members affected by the tragedy and their lawyers are boycotting the proceedings over the next week.
Former Chief Anchor Steve Murphy offers a timely perspective on the Mass Casualty Commission and the difference 30 years after the Westray inquiry.
Two more people have been charged with murder in connection with a fatal house fire in Nova Scotia’s Yarmouth County in March. Three people have now been charged in the case.
A candidate in the provincial election in Greater Sudbury has been named in a $306 million lawsuit related to last winter's trucker convoy in Ottawa.
The partnership between the Sudbury Theatre Centre and YES Theatre has many people wondering what it means for arts in the city -- and why it was put in place without consulting the arts community first.
An Orillia man responsible for causing a head-on collision when he drove the wrong way on Highway 11 four years ago, sending a woman to the hospital with life-altering injuries, has been acquitted.
New details are emerging about the tragic incident that killed 27-year-old Shelby Humble-Neale on Saturday.
Waterloo regional police say evidence of gunfire found in McLennan Park in Kitchener is connected to another shooting incident in the nearby area of Windflower Drive and Windflower Crescent.
Two 29-year-old men have been seriously injured following a collision in Baden, Ont., with one needing to be airlifted to a hospital outside the region.