Moderna vaccines heading to northern Saskatchewan

Residents and staff at long-term care homes in northern Saskatchewan as well as other high priority healthcare workers will soon be getting inoculated against COVID-19.

On Wednesday, the province announced the first Moderna vaccines have arrived and are on their way to the north as the province continues with its vaccination program. It is expected those shots will start being administered beginning next week.

Provincial chief medical health officer Dr. Saqib Shahab says the vaccines are headed to that area of the province because that is  where high case numbers and high test-positive numbers have been seen.

Health Minister Paul Merriman also indicated more Pfizer vaccines are to arrive and head to Prince Albert.  He says that while the vaccination program is proceeding well at this time, some clarity is needed from Ottawa moving forward.

“While our vaccination program has been going well so far, these are still relatively small numbers of vaccines that we have received from the federal government,” Merriman said. “We expect the federal government to begin receiving and distributing much larger numbers of vaccines early in the new year.”

Merriman is also encouraged by the recent numbers we are seeing which show things moving downward.  On Wednesday, the active case count dropped to below 3,000 for the first time since November 24 and that the seven-day daily average which stood at 292 on December 12 is now at 152.  While saying that is a positive, Merriman admits the amount of people being tested has not been as high as normal because of the holidays.

While the vaccination program has started, it will still be a while before the general public is eligible to have their shot.  Shahab says with that being the case, the vigilance must continue.

“While the vaccine is essential to protect the most vulnerable and as vaccine supplies will improve over March, April and May.” Shahab said. “It’s really important that we continue practicing all of the good things we have been doing so far.”


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