Regina– In reporting 299 new active cases of COVID-19 on Nov. 26, Saskatchewan has continued its trend of exponential growth while its neighbours Manitoba and North Dakota have flattened or lowered their respective curves for 7-day average new cases.
Those 299 new cases bring Saskatchewan’s 7-day average new cases count to 243, its highest level to date. It also indicates that Saskatchewan’s average has now effectively doubled, again.
On October 10, Saskatchewan hit a 7-day average of 15 new cases per day. Five days later, that doubled to 30, with 31.4 on Oct. 15. Fourteen days later, it doubled again to 60, with 61.7 on Oct. 29. Twelve days after that, it doubled once more to 120, with 120.7 on Nov. 10. Now, on Nov. 26, it has doubled once again to 240, with 243 average new cases per day.
As of Nov. 15, Saskatchewan, Manitoba and North Dakota were all showing exponential growth in their 7-day averages. But in over the past two weeks, both Manitoba and North Dakota have shown either a flattening, or a downward trend, in their curves.
Since Nov. 12, Manitoba’s 7-day average has stayed within a range between 371.6 and 422.7, with Nov. 26 coming in at 402.3.
North Dakota has started to show a downward trend for 7-day average new cases. On Nov. 26, its 7-day average was 1,123 cases per day, the best it had been since Nov. 3, when it was 1,156. North Dakota crested at 1,415.7 average cases per day on Nov. 18, and has been slowly declining over the eight days since then.
Saskatchewan’s growth rate was slightly higher than Manitoba’s for the period of Oct. 1 to Nov. 15. During that period, Saskatchewan had been staying consistently 16 to 18 days behind Manitoba when it came to 7-day average new cases. For example, Saskatchewan hit 120 average new cases per day on Nov. 10, whereas Manitoba hit that level on Oct. 25, 16 days earlier. But by Nov. 26, that gap has widened to 25 days. Manitoba exceeded 240 cases per day on Nov. 1, with 255.4, whereas Saskatchewan hit the 240 level on Nov. 26.
When it comes to deaths, with three new deaths reported Nov. 26, Saskatchewan for the first time exceeded a 7-day average of one death per day, coming in at 1.1 average deaths per day.
Manitoba, with 10 deaths reported on Nov. 26, averaged 9.7 deaths per day. That level has been relatively consistent since Nov. 16, varying between 9.0 and 9.9 deaths per day. However, that plateau essentially stopped the exponential growth of deaths in Manitoba, which had doubled several times, from one to two, two to four, four to eight per day in just 38 days.
Similarly, North Dakota has also seen a plateau. Since Nov. 6, North Dakota has ranged between 13.4 and 16.3 average deaths per day. It, too, had been seeing exponential growth since Aug. 4, but at a much lower rate of growth. Its deaths had grown from a 7-day average of 1 on Aug. 4 to 16 by Nov. 10.
Brian Zinchuk, Local Journalism Initiative reporter, Estevan Mercury