Sask. NDP calls on province to ask military for help in 4th wave of COVID-19
The Saskatchewan NDP says it’s time for the province to consider asking the Canadian military for help as COVID-19 hospitalizations continue to rise.
There are 265 COVID-19 patients in hospital as of Wednesday, marking the fourth consecutive day the province has broke its hospitalization record.
The Saskatchewan Health Authority announced the pediatric intensive care unit (PICU) at the Jim Pattison Children’s Hospital in Saskatoon has started accepting adult patients under the age of 40 to try and manage provincial ICU capacity.
As of Tuesday afternoon, 78 of the province’s 101 ICU beds were full and two adult COVID-19 patients were in the PICU.
The call comes as Alberta begins working with the federal government on plans to use military resources to transfer COVID-19 patients out of province, if necessary.
The NDP said troops can assist in a number of ways, like contact tracing, testing and on the frontlines.
“It can be providing medical support, ICU support for medical nurses but it can also be logistical support to put troops on the ground to just have extra bodies,” said Vicki Mowat, NDP health critic.
The province said it is in regular contact with the federal government about the pandemic response. And while it has asked for additional rapid test kits, there have been no other requests for federal support.