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A look at how Saskatchewan is emerging from the coronavirus shutdown

Saskatchewan moved into its latest phase, 4.2, of its reopening strategy on June 29.
Saskatchewan moved into its latest phase, 4.2, of its reopening strategy on June 29. Michael Bell / The Canadian Press

Wearing a mask in Saskatchewan isn’t mandatory right now, but chief medical health officer Dr. Saqib Shahab says it may become a rule if there’s an uptick in COVID-19 transmission rates.

Saskatchewan has expanded its pandemic guidelines for visitors to long-term care homes. Residents of long-term care homes can now have two family members or support persons for visits, with one person allowed in the facility at a time.

Patients in intensive care and those receiving palliative care can have two people present at the same time, as long as they keep physical distance.

Visitors are expected to follow health-care guidelines, such as wearing masks, to protect others against the spread of COVID-19.

Read more: Saskatchewan moving to final Phase 4 reopening schedule in July

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Phase 4.2 of Re-Open Saskatchewan began June 29, with some restrictions related to the novel coronavirus pandemic lifting.

Guidelines that took effect involved libraries, museums, art galleries and theatres.

More guidelines for Phase 4.2 were released on Thursday.

Starting July 16, the province will loosen COVID-19 restrictions on racetracks and rodeo-related activities, banquet and conference facilities as well as car and trade shows.

Saskatchewan moved into Phase 4.1 of its reopening strategy on June 22.

Under it, camping in national parks resumed, but by reservation only.

Youth camps can reopen, but for day use only, and with guidelines for preventing the spread of COVID-19, including the constant disinfection of play structures and monitoring of children for coronavirus symptoms.

Read more: Coronavirus: Here’s what you can and can’t do in Phase 4.2 of Saskatchewan’s reopen plan

Outdoor sports like soccer, softball and flag football can resume, though full-contact sports remain prohibited, as does competitive play, tournaments and inter-provincial travel for games.

Shared equipment must be disinfected frequently, while congratulatory gestures, such as high fives and handshakes, are not permitted.

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Saskatchewan’s outdoor swimming pools and spray parks can reopen with physical distancing, maximum capacity, and stringent cleaning rules in effect.

The province has also doubled the allowable size of indoor public and private gatherings to 30 people where space allows for two metres between participants.

The third phase of Saskatchewan’s reopening plan started June 8 with the province lifting a ban on non-essential travel in the north.

More businesses were also allowed to reopen, including places of worship and personal care services such as nail salons, tattoo parlours and gyms.

Read more: Saskatchewan’s chief medical health officer discusses provincial reopening plan

Up to 150 people or one-third the capacity of a building, whichever is less, can attend church services, including weddings and funerals.

Restaurants and bars can open at half capacity, with physical distancing between tables, and child-care centres can open their doors to a maximum of 15 kids.

In Phase 5, the province will consider lifting restrictions on the size of public gatherings.

The Saskatchewan government says students will return to regular classes in September.

-Files from Thomas Piller

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