Saskatchewan’s rate of COVID-19 transmission has risen since Christmas and ICU beds across the province are at about 95 per cent capacity, with both COVID and non-COVID patients. The Saskatchewan Health Authority discussed capacity at Wednesday’s Board of Director’s meeting.
The CEO of SHA is Scott Livingstone, who says if you just include the beds at the ICUs in the mid to larger cities, the number is more like 75, however that doesn’t mean it’s time to move to a field hospital.
Livingstone explains that the decision to ramp up to a field hospital goes beyond ICU capacity.
There are other things that can be done first, like slowing down service in another area of the hospital and using trained staff with experience in the ICU working in other areas of the hospital to expand capacity.
The SHA hasn’t escalated its surge planning, Livingstone says, because they are still within the limits and with Public Health Orders being extended which could bring the transmission rate down, there are no plans to make any major changes. If you are included in Phase 1 of Saskatchewan’s vaccination plan, you will be contacted.
That from the CEO of the Saskatchewan Health Authority, Scott Livingstone, who says they aren’t looking for people to be responsible for identifying themselves. He says once the province moves into Phase 2 and more vaccines begin to flow, there will be more information about where and vaccinations will take place. It’s expected Phase 2 will begin in April, which will include the rest of the priority population immunization followed by the general population.
The provincial government’s website says, depending on the supply of vaccine, the roll out may include further defining of priority populations. Phase 1 is estimated at around 185,000 Saskatchewan residents.
It includes long-term and personal care home residents and staff, healthcare workers exposed to COVID-19, residents 80 and over, and those 50 and over in Northern Saskatchewan. If supplies allow, after the older seniors are vaccinated, residents 75 and over would be next, follow by 70 and over.