Sad news on the day before Christmas as the province reports four more deaths due to COVID-19.
Two of the four were aged 80 plus and from Regina with the other two being a person in their 70’s and a person over the age of 80 from the Northwest zone.
In all, there are 154 new cases to go along with 655 recoveries putting the active case count at 3,346. The seven-day average is now at 203.
The new cases are located in the Far North West (10), Far North East (14), North West (17), North Central (28), North East (3), Saskatoon (30), Central West (2), Central East (10), Regina (25), South Central (3) and South East (3) zones. Nine new cases have pending residence information.
There is a discrepancy when it comes to hospitalizations. The daily release from the government has the following information.
The provincial dashboard reports that 125 people are in hospital. 104 people are receiving inpatient care: two in the Far North West, four in the North West, 18 in the North Central, three in the North East, 40 in the Saskatoon, two in the Central West, four in the Central East, 25 in the Regina, two in the South West and four in the South East zones. Twenty-one people are in intensive care: one in the North West, six in the North Central, ten in the Saskatoon, three in the Regina and one in the South West zones.
With Saskatchewan updating definitions of the COVID-19 infectious period to align with national definitions, the COVID-19 data set correction resulted in the number of individuals hospitalized due to COVID-19 being under-reported in the daily, provincial report. As of December 22, 2020, there were an additional 40 COVID-19 patients in hospital, including nine in ICU, who have been receiving care, resulting in the reported case number of 165. The Saskatchewan Health Authority is working on a process to ensure these numbers are included in the daily case reports. The provincial dashboard will have a notation added while this process is finalized.
These are not new hospitalizations. These are patients no longer infectious for COVID-19, which had shifted them from active to recovered cases, but still experiencing the complications of COVID-19 illness. Validation processes are in place to report a complete census of patients in hospital, including ICU, due to COVID-19. The Ministry of Health is currently reviewing how these cases are reported in other Canadian jurisdictions.