South African variant of COVID-19 detected in North Central zone

·3 min read

The province reported on Tuesday that a resident of the North Central zone, which includes Prince Albert, has had the B1.351 SA (South Africa) COVID-19 variant detected in their test, the individual was tested at the end of January and Public Health’s investigation is ongoing.

The B1.1.7 UK (United Kingdom) variant has been detected in two residents in the Regina zone. These individuals were tested at the end of January. Based on the contact investigation to date, there is no link to travel at this time but public health's investigation is ongoing.

There is also a presumptive case of B1.1.7 UK in one individual in the Saskatoon zone. The individual was transferred from out of province to Saskatoon for acute care.

Whole genome sequencing will need to be completed to confirm the results and health's contact investigation is ongoing.

“All residents with a confirmed COVID-19 test are required to isolate to reduce the risk of transmission. If required, public health will issue a public service announcement to alert the general public to any risk due to any confirmed case of a variant of concern. The Government of Saskatchewan continues to plan for the impact of variants on COVID-19 including any required increase to public health measures and surge capacity planning,” the province’s release explained.

This brings the provincial total of confirmed variant of concern cases to six.

Meanwhile, there were four deaths related to COVOID-19 reported in the province on Tuesday.

There were three deaths reported in the Regina zone with two in the 80 plus age group and one in the 70 to 79 age group. There was also a death reported in the 80 plus age group in the Saskatoon zone.

The number of deaths in the province currently sits at 376.

There were 122 new cases of COVID-19 reported in the province on Tuesday.

The North Central zone, which includes Prince Albert, reported four new cases.

One additional case was added to North Central that had tested positive out of province.

North Central 2, which is Prince Albert, has 36 active cases.

North Central 1, which includes communities such as Christopher Lake, Candle Lake and Meath Park, has 47 active cases and North Central 3 has 19 active cases. There are currently 174 people in hospital overall in the province. Of the 158 reported as receiving in patient care there are 17 in North Central. Of the 16 people reported as being in intensive care there is one in North Central.

The current seven-day average 156, or 12.7 cases per 100,000 population.

Of the 27,923 reported COVID-19 cases in Saskatchewan, 1,530 are considered active.

The recovered number now sits at 26,017 after 244 more recoveries were reported.

The total numbers of cases since the beginning of the pandemic is 27,923 of those 77,238 cases are from the North area (2,917 North West, 3,192 North Central and1,129 North East).

There were 549 doses of COVID-19 vaccine administered yesterday in Saskatchewan bringing the total number of vaccines administered in the province to 62,342.

There were no doses administered in the North Central yesterday. Doses were administered in the adjacent North East zone, North West, Far North Central, Central East, Regina and Saskatoon zones.

An additional 21 doses were administered in the Central East zone on Feb.17 and an additional 52 doses were administered in the South Central zone on Feb. 19.

There were 1,872 COVID-19 tests processed in Saskatchewan on Feb. 21.

As of today there have been 563,055 COVID-19 tests performed in Saskatchewan.

Michael Oleksyn, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Prince Albert Daily Herald