Saskatoon

Sask. working on 'more permissive approach' to interprovincial travel

Saskatchewan’s chief medical health officer says discussions are underway with other provinces to loosen the current recommendation against non-essential provincial travel.

Saskatchewan currently recommends against non-essential travel to other provinces

Saskatchewan's chief medical health officer Dr. Saqib Shahab says anyone who decides to travel interprovincially should have a plan in case they start to show symptoms of COVID-19. (Alex Soloducha/CBC)

Saskatchewan's chief medical health officer says discussions are underway with other provinces to loosen the current recommendation against non-essential provincial travel. 

"We are working with our neighbouring provinces to have a more permissive approach," said Dr. Saqib Shahab at a news conference Tuesday. 

The government currently advises against non-essential travel to other provinces but does not require people who have crossed provincial borders to self-isolate or quarantine when they return. 

Although the recommendation against non-essential travel may change, Shahab said making plans to enjoy the summer months locally is still preferable. 

"If people do want to travel interprovincially I think they do need to make sure that they check to see what's permissible in the other province," he said. 

"They need to plan ahead in terms of if everyone is asymptomatic [and] what's the plan if someone does get symptoms." 

He also urged interprovincial travellers to check ahead to see if their choice of accommodation is allowing visitors from Saskatchewan. 

Shahab had specific recommendations for sports teams who would usually travel to compete. 

"You can make a small bubble of two or three teams maybe up to 30 or 50 people depending on what sport it is and play within your bubble at a local level," he said. 

He said sports teams should remain cautious about travelling even within Saskatchewan, adding that sporting events and related social gatherings were linked to outbreaks early in the pandemic. 

Shab said that within local sporting groups, people should be sure to continue physical distancing whenever they are off the field. 

The province announced Tuesday that contact sports are now allowed in Saskatchewan.

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