10 people infected in coronavirus variant outbreak at Saskatoon's Sports on Tap bar

·2 min read
Sports on Tap is located on Lorne Avenue, in the immediate vicinity of Prairieland Park, which is the site of Saskatoon appointment-only and drive-thru COVID-19 vaccine clinics.  (Sports on Tap/Facebook - image credit)
Sports on Tap is located on Lorne Avenue, in the immediate vicinity of Prairieland Park, which is the site of Saskatoon appointment-only and drive-thru COVID-19 vaccine clinics. (Sports on Tap/Facebook - image credit)

Ten people are infected in a coronavirus variant outbreak at Saskatoon's Sports on Tap bar, the Saskatchewan Health Authority says.

The SHA declared an outbreak at the bar — which coincidentally is located just southeast of a COVID-19 drive-in and appointment-only vaccination clinic — on Tuesday.

The specific variant has not been identified yet.

"Additional testing is required," a spokesperson said.

The infections found during contact tracing so far are among both staff and patrons.

The SHA issued a public exposure notice about the bar Tuesday at around 7 p.m., just hours after the province hosted its latest COVID-19 news conference. The bar was not mentioned at the news conference, though Dr. Saqib Shahab, Saskatchewan's chief medical health officer, warned that Saskatoon was "on the cusp" of having a larger number of variant cases.

Customers and staff who were at Sports on Tap during the following hours are being told to immediately self-isolate for 14 days:

  • April 5, 6 p.m. to 10 p.m.

  • April 9, 11:25 a.m. to 5:25 p.m.

  • April 10, 11:45 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

One or more people were at the bar during those hours while infectious, according to the release.

People are to call the 811 HealthLine or their doctor's office if they develop symptoms.

Avoid unnecessary travel, SHA says

In its release, the SHA cited an "increased risk of COVID-19 variants of concern in Saskatoon" and reminded residents to follow long-established precautions such as keeping two metres distance from other people.

The health authority urged people to stick to their immediate household bubbles, as people province-wide are now required to do under a tightened rule added to Saskatchewan's public health orders earlier on Tuesday.

The release also went one step further in urging Saskatoon residents to avoid unnecessary travel. Before, health officials had only called for restricted travel in and out of Regina, Weyburn and Moose Jaw.

The SHA also recommended that people get vaccinated when they are eligible to do so.

Saskatoon had a cumulative 302 variants of concern on Tuesday, up from 181 the day before.