Saskatoon

Health authority announces wave of confirmed and suspected COVID-19 outbreaks in Regina care homes

Most of those infected have not been displaying symptoms and have not required hospitalization, according to the SHA.

Most infected people have not required hospitalization, according to Saskatchewan Health Authority

The Saskatchewan Health Authority announced seven newly confirmed or suspected COVID-19 outbreaks in Regina care homes on Monday morning. (GagliardiPhotogra/Shutterstock)

Saskatchewan health officials have announced a wave of newly confirmed and suspected COVID-19 care home outbreaks in Regina.

On Monday, the Saskatchewan Health Authority said several cases of COVID-19 were found at seven nursing homes in Regina.

Outbreaks were declared at Parkside Extendicare, Regina Lutheran Home, Pioneer Village and some units at  Wascana Rehab Centre, while an outbreak is only still suspected at Extendicare's Sunset and Elmview homes as well as Santa Maria Senior Citizens Home. 

In order for an outbreak to be declared, two positive COVID-19 cases need to be found.

Health officials hosting a news conference Monday afternoon said did they not have statistics on hand, including the total number of positive cases and hospitalizations between the seven homes. But they promised to provide more soon. 

Infections are being seen in vaccinated and unvaccinated residents and staff. Most of those infected at the seven nursing homes have not been displaying symptoms and have not required hospitalization, according to the SHA.

Dr. Rashaad Hansia says the Saskatchewan Health Authority is strongly encouraging long-term care workers to be tested for and vaccinated against COVID-19. (CBC)

"There is no one clear incident that has been identified, a catalyst, for the new cases," said Dr. Rashaad Hansia, the SHA's physician executive for integrated urban health. 

CBC News previously reported the new outbreak at Parkside, where one fully vaccinated resident and an unspecified number of staff have tested positive for COVID-19.

Testing at the homes is ongoing for both staff and residents, although Hansia said there is nothing requiring workers to be either tested for COVID-19 or vaccinated against it. 

"But it is something we strongly encourage," he said. 

Vaccination rates for residents at most of the seven homes are above 90 per cent, he added. 

HEPA fan filters have been brought in to improve air circulation in the homes "out of an abundance of caution," Hansia said. All workers are required to wear N-95 respirators at all times. 

Some residents may be moved to other facilities.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Guy Quenneville

Reporter at CBC Ottawa, originally from Cornwall, Ont.

Story tips? Email me at guy.quenneville@cbc.ca or DM me @gqinott on Twitter.

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