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Weather, logistical impediments delay coronavirus test results in Saskatchewan

WATCH: Saskatchewan's Health Minister Paul Merriman and chief medical health officer, Dr. Saqib Shahab, provide update on the COVID-19 pandemic in the province on Thursday afternoon.

Weather and logistical impediments resulted in specimens reaching the lab after the reporting period for Thursday’s new coronavirus case numbers in Saskatchewan, according to the province.

The volume of specimens that didn’t reach Roy Romanow Provincial Laboratory in time was not specified.

Read more: Mask mandate comes into effect provincewide as Saskatchewan tries to tame COVID-19

According to a press release, 2,004 COVID-19 tests were performed on Wednesday in Saskatchewan. To date, 307,264 tests have been carried out in the province.

Health officials said there were 98 new cases in the daily update on Thursday, with the overall total for the province growing to 5,651 since the first case was reported in March. The residence locations of four new infections are still pending.

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According to a press release, most of the new cases are located in the Regina zone with 25, while there are 14 in south central, 12 each in north west and north central, 10 in Saskatoon, five each in north east, central east and south east, three in far north east, two in far north west and one in central west.

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In the province, 83 people are currently in hospital with COVID-19 — 62 are receiving inpatient care and 21 are in intensive care. This is the highest number of hospitalizations to date.

Over 130 more people have recovered, bringing total recoveries to 3,553.

Read more: Saskatchewan hospitality industry prepares for more COVID-19 restrictions

There are currently 2,066 active cases in the province, health officials said. Active cases are total cases less recoveries and deaths.

There have been 32 COVID-19-related deaths in Saskatchewan.

Click to play video: 'Coronavirus: Saskatchewan aiming to receive 180K COVID-19 vaccines in first quarter 2021'
Coronavirus: Saskatchewan aiming to receive 180K COVID-19 vaccines in first quarter 2021

Questions about COVID-19? Here are some things you need to know:

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Symptoms can include fever, cough and difficulty breathing — very similar to a cold or flu. Some people can develop a more severe illness. People most at risk of this include older adults and people with severe chronic medical conditions like heart, lung or kidney disease. If you develop symptoms, contact public health authorities.

To prevent the virus from spreading, experts recommend frequent handwashing and coughing into your sleeve. They also recommend minimizing contact with others, staying home as much as possible and maintaining a distance of two metres from other people if you go out. In situations where you can’t keep a safe distance from others, public health officials recommend the use of a non-medical face mask or covering to prevent spreading the respiratory droplets that can carry the virus. In some provinces and municipalities across the country, masks or face coverings are now mandatory in indoor public spaces.

For full COVID-19 coverage from Global News, click here.

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