Saskatchewan

Woman given $2,800 ticket violated public health order after COVID-19 diagnosis, police say

A 23-year-old woman who was ticketed for violating a public health order was not in self-isolation even though she was diagnosed with COVID-19, the Regina Police Service says.

23-year-old had received positive test result on March 31, police say

A woman with a COVID-19 diagnosis was ticketed for violating a public health order, Regina police said in a news release on Tuesday. (Submitted by the Regina Police Service)

A 23-year-old woman who was ticketed for violating a public health order was not in self-isolation even though she was diagnosed with COVID-19, the Regina Police Service says.

The woman was ticketed $2,800 on Monday under the Public Health Act for violating the order, which had been issued March 31, for not putting herself into self-isolation because of the confirmed diagnosis.

The Saskatchewan Public Safety Agency says nearly 400 complaints about people violating COVID-19 health orders have been made to a toll-free line.

The province launched the phone line March 25 to handle pandemic-related questions not pertaining to health.

The RPS said in a news release that it decided to release the additional information about the woman's case after talking with officials in the Ministry of Health.

"Because of the pandemic and because of the risk to any member of the public posed by someone who is COVID-19 positive, we felt that it was important to release the fact that she had tested positive," said Elizabeth Popowich, manager of public information for the RPS.  

The order says that anyone who has COVID-19, has been in close contact with someone who has the virus, or who has returned from international travel, must isolate themselves for 14 days.

Popowich said health officials took a complaint on a phone line established to report potential health order violations. They then gave information to police, who found the woman, ticketed her and took her into custody.

Popowich said officers would've had personal protective equipment on during the encounter with the woman.

"We have to get supplies like anyone else but all of our officers are equipped and ready to respond," Popowich said.

The woman's identity and name are not being released for privacy reasons. She has not been criminally charged.

Dr. Saqib Shahab, the chief medical health officer of the province, has said in the past evidence suggests the virus stays in the body for 10 to 14 days.

Some people may exhibit very mild symptoms or no symptoms at all, which is why people are asked to remain indoors unless necessary.

With files from Sam Maciag, Canadian Press

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