Fourth wave of COVID-19 dominates the first day of Saskatchewan’s Question Period

As Saskatchewan continues to battle the COVID-19 pandemic, the NDP questioned the provincial government’s handling of the fourth wave.

Opposition Leader Ryan Meili says he believes the Premier has not listened to recommendations from Chief Medical Health Officer Dr. Saqib Shahab because his advice is not being enacted.

“(Saskatchewan has) the lowest vaccination rate in  the country, the highest death rate in the country, over 800 lives lost,” Meili said. “What have Dr. Shahab’s recommendations been in recent weeks, and what are his recommendations right now? And will the Premier release those?”

Premier Scott Moe says since mandatory masking and proof of vaccine or negative test measures came into effect — which according to Moe were part of Dr. Shahab’s recommendations — the active case count is down over 50 percent from it’s peak, and close to 150,000 vaccines have been administered.

“The members opposite are looking to put in sweeping public health measures across the province even though 85 percent of the people of this province have done the right thing,” Moe said. “This government is putting in place all of the tools available to keep people safe, to keep people out of hospital, but also to respect the personal freedoms that we have and enjoy in this province.”

While gathering limits have not been put in place at this time, Premier Scott Moe says about 85 percent of the eligible population have received their first dose, so those limits would only work when restricted to the unvaccinated population.

“There is some discussion about making that ultimately into a public health order if the trajectory of our cases would change in the province,” Moe said. “The trajectory of cases in our province is decreasing, it’s decreasing quite rapidly. We’re down 52 percent on our seven-day case load.

“That’s because of what Saskatchewan people should do.”

Moe says if the trend starts to show an increase in cases, consultations with Dr. Shahab would then take place on more public health orders.

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