The Saskatchewan NDP is calling on the provincial government to push to have people vaccinated with a booster shot to protect against the Omicron COVID-19 variant. NDP Leader Ryan Meili wants the province to have a roadmap ahead of time and to have a schedule for booster shots for Saskatchewan residents.
“We need to make sure people are getting those booster doses. Let’s have an Omicron plan,” said Meili. “Show that we’re ready to get ahead of this and not wait until it’s too late. What does that Omicron plan look like? It looks like getting that third dose to everyone as soon as we can.”
On Dec. 13, Meili asked Premier Scott Moe and Health Minister Paul Merriman to come up with a plan as the Omicron variant is already in Saskatchewan. The Omicron plan that Meili suggests is getting the booster shot into the arms of Saskatchewan residents as soon as possible, to know what the quantity of supply is and to know what the schedule will look like. Meili is also asking the province for a plan for Christmas.
“Last week, we heard the premier suggesting that people should get together, groups of vaccinated and unvaccinated,” he said. “That kind of advice is muddying the waters. It’s unclear and it’s unsafe. Let’s have clear (and) distinct guidelines from the chief medical health officer so people know what to do to keep themselves safe over Christmas.”
The Saskatchewan Ministry of Health responded to the NDP’s call with a statement that they announced on Dec. 7 that individuals aged 50 years and older and those 18 years and older living in the far north and on First Nation communities, all health-care workers and those who are born in 2009 and earlier with underlying health conditions are eligible to receive their COVID-19 booster dose five months after their second dose.
However, the remaining age groups won’t be receiving a booster shot until the new year.
“Additional age groups will be added, with the target of making boosters available to all Saskatchewan residents 18 and older early in 2022,” according to the statement.
Saskatchewan’s Ministry of Health announced last week that the first Omicron cases were discovered in the province after four people from a single household tested positive for the variant of concern.