Province unveils new COVID-19 measures for isolation, booster shots, and proof of vaccination

A number of new COVID-19 measures have been announced by the provincial government.

Premier Scott Moe says new public health orders will be taking effect as Covid case counts continue to rise, especially among the unvaccinated.

The province will enact a public health order mandating that anyone that tests positive for COVID-19 self-isolate for 10-days after receiving a positive test result.

“Also, the public health order will require those that are close contacts of an individual who has tested positive for COVID-19, and are unvaccinated, will also be required to self-isolate for 10 days,” said Moe.

Moe says people who have received both doses of a COVID-19 vaccine will only have to self-monitor if deemed a close contact.

“If you are fully vaccinated, and identified as a close contact of a positive Covid case, you will not be required to self-isolate,” said Moe. “But you will be required to self-monitor, and to seek testing of course, at the first signs of any symptoms.”

The province has also announced a reduction of non-critical or elective services in order to expand surge capacity in the health system. The service disruptions that will result will be time-limited as possible to limit the impact on patients.

On top of this, the province will also be expanding private contact tracing resources, as well as expanding testing capacity through existing third-party contracted testing service providers. The province has secured an additional one million rapid antigen tests from the federal government, with half of them arriving late next week. The tests will be made available to long term care and personal care facilities, shelters, group homes and schools for routine testing, while also available for workplace screening at businesses and self-testing for health care workers, dentists, first responders and pharmacists.

Beginning in October, the province says COVID-19 booster shots will be made available to Saskatchewan’s seniors population, with further expansion throughout the winter months. Further details on eligibility, sequencing, and timing of booster administration will be announced in the coming weeks.

Provincial Chief Medical Health Officer says vaccines have proven to both slow the spread of COVID-19, and prevent serious illness.
He says it’s baffling as to why so many people keep denying a proven, and effective treatment for the disease,
“Imagine if this was polio, and we still had to have children in iron lungs. I think that’s very distressing,” said Shahab. “No one could have anticipated 15 months ago that there would be a safe and effective vaccine for coronavirus. We have a safe and effective vaccine, and it’s unfathomable why so many people choose to be unvaccinated.”
He says its sad to see so many unvaccinated people dying from a disease they didn’t believe existed.

Lastly, the province also announced a verifiable record of vaccination is in its final stages of development and will be launched during the week of September 20. Residents who are registered for My Sask Health Record will be able to download their vaccine record — including a unique QR code — and protect personal health information.

More details on the vaccination records, QR codes and the verification app will be available in the days leading up to its launch.

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