Saskatchewan’s top doctor says COVID-19 vaccine effectiveness seems to be 99% or higher

Dr. Saqib Shahab, Saskatchewan’s chief medical health officer, says vaccine effectiveness seems to be 99 per cent or higher at this time. Michael Bell / The Canadian Press

Saskatchewan’s chief medical health officer says the effectiveness of the COVID-19 vaccine has been extremely high, shown in the latest round of data.

During Tuesday’s COVID-19 update, Dr. Saqib Shahab was asked how many people have tested positive for the virus after receiving their vaccine.

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He stressed it takes up to three weeks to develop protection after being vaccinated, but said results have been encouraging.

“The breakthrough cases are .09 per cent, vaccine effectiveness seems to be 99 per cent or higher — quite remarkable, really,” Shahab said.

“It reinforces that everyone needs to get vaccinated and follow up with a second dose.”

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Saskatchewan Premier Scott Moe also emphasized the importance of getting vaccinated, saying it was the key to leading the province to its recently announced three-step reopening roadmap.

He said the province is on the way to a “one-dose spring … two-dose summer.”

“We’re going to have a one-dose spring and quite likely a two-dose summer as we are planning to have second doses available to everyone in the province by sometime in the middle of July,” Moe said Tuesday.

Moe said more than 70 per cent of Saskatchewan residents aged 40 and older have received their first shot.

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Saskatchewan lays out ‘roadmap’ in reopening from pandemic

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