COVID-19 in Sask.: ICU patient receiving out-of-province care returns, 23 remain in Ontario

·3 min read
Gear is unloaded from a Canadian Armed Forces CC-130J Hercules Aircraft at Saskatoon John G. Diefenbaker International Airport on Oct. 26, 2021. The CAF have been deployed to Saskatchewan as part of efforts to provide relief for the province's ICUs. There are 23 patients receiving care out of province as of Saturday. (Don Somers/CBC News - image credit)
Gear is unloaded from a Canadian Armed Forces CC-130J Hercules Aircraft at Saskatoon John G. Diefenbaker International Airport on Oct. 26, 2021. The CAF have been deployed to Saskatchewan as part of efforts to provide relief for the province's ICUs. There are 23 patients receiving care out of province as of Saturday. (Don Somers/CBC News - image credit)

One patient sent to an intensive care unit in Ontario returned to Saskatchewan on Friday, the province said in Saturday's COVID-19 update.

The patient is now included in the 173 patients receiving in-patient care for the illness in Saskatchewan hospitals, according to the provincial COVID-19 dashboard.

There are currently another 53 people in ICUs in Saskatchewan, and 23 Saskatchewan patients in intensive care in Ontario.

About 70 per cent of the total 226 people in Saskatchewan hospitals with COVID-19 were not fully vaccinated.

The province's dashboard shows that hospital numbers have continued to drop in recent days.

Patients brought back into the province — which the province refers to as "repatriation" — no longer need to be in an ICU, but will be readmitted to a Saskatchewan hospital because they will still need care.

Marlo Pritchard, president of the Saskatchewan Public Safety Agency, told reporters on Friday that the the agency has "no plan [for transfers] past Sunday."

The number of active COVID-19 cases in Saskatchewan has continued on a downward trend, reaching 2,307 on Saturday, a decrease of about 51 per cent from a month ago.

On Sept. 30, the province had 4,669 active cases.

For just over a week, the number of new cases reported has dropped each day.

There were 189 new cases reported on Saturday, according to the provincial COVID-19 dashboard, bringing the total number of cases to 77,494.

COVID-19 in Saskatchewan by the numbers

Of the new cases, nearly 30 per cent are under 12 years old and ineligible for a COVID-19 vaccine in Canada.

Saskatchewan reported four new deaths, bringing the total in the province since the start of the pandemic to 850.

The seven-day rolling average of daily new cases dropped to 203, about 29 per cent lower than one week ago, according to the dashboard.

COVID-19 in Canada

Despite Saskatchewan's reduced number of active cases, the province still maintains the highest rate of active cases per capita of any Canadian province, according to the government of Canada's epidemiology report.

As of Friday evening, there were 201 active cases of COVID-19 per 100,000 people in the province, compared with second-place Alberta's rate of 184 cases. British Columbia is the only other province with rate numbers in three-digits, with 104 cases per 100,000.

Saskatchewan also holds the top spot among provinces for the rate of new cases in the past seven days and the rate of deaths in the past seven days.

Vaccine uptake in Saskatchewan

The province recorded an additional 4,320 vaccines administered in Saturday's update. Of those, 1,155 were first doses and 3,165 were second doses.

There have now been 1,664,475 shots put into arms in Saskatchewan, according to the dashboard. About 870,800 are first doses and nearly 793,700 are second doses.

Daily vaccination progress in Saskatchewan

According to the CBC vaccine tracker, about 79.3 per cent of the eligible people in the province have received two doses of the vaccine and 87.2 per cent have received one shot.

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