Sask. reports 15 new COVID-19 cases; most linked to outbreak in Hutterite communities
REGINA -- Saskatchewan is reporting 15 new COVID-19 cases on Thursday, bringing the provincial total to 708.
Of the new cases, 14 are linked to an outbreak in two Hutterite communities in the R.M. of Maple Creek.
The other new case is in the far north region.
There are currently 59 cases considered active. Three more people have recovered for a total of 636 recoveries.
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Dr. Saqib Shahab, the province’s Chief Medical Health Officer, said local health officials are conducting a large investigation in the southwest part of the province.
“It involves several colonies both in Saskatchewan and Alberta because there’s frequent travel back and forth,” Shahab said.
“This is part of an ongoing outbreak investigation and details, as appropriate, will be shared.”
The first two positive cases were identified in these communities last week.
Due to the proximity to the Alberta border and frequent travel between these communities, the Alberta Ministry of Health is coordinating with Saskatchewan Health officials in this investigation.
Public health officials are also working in conjunction with the leadership in these communities.
While cases have remained relatively low in the province’s southern region, Shahab says this outbreak is a reminder for Saskatchewan people to be vigilant.
“Even when numbers are low anywhere in Saskatchewan, don’t assume there’s no covert transmission,” said Shahab.
“You should continue to take your precautions all the time, and that’s why we want to encourage testing, even if you have mild symptoms or any concerns, and that would be my message to anyone in the southwest.”
Two people are currently in hospital in Saskatoon; one is in inpatient care, the other is in intensive care.
The far north leads the province with 285 cases, while 184 are from the Saskatoon area, 112 are from the north, 80 are from the Regina area, 33 are from the south and 12 are from the central region.
There have been 246 cases in 20 to 39 age range, 217 in the 40 to 59 age range, 119 in the 60 to 79 age range, 21 in the 80-plus age range and 105 cases are in people aged 19-years or younger.
Women make up 51 per cent of cases, while men account for the other 49.
There have been 13 COVID-19-related deaths in the province.