Aug. 31, 2021

SMA expresses gratitude to organizations for helping blunt fourth wave of pandemic

Saskatchewan Medical Association president Dr. Eben Strydom expressed gratitude today to organizations that are taking steps on their own to blunt the fourth wave of the COVID-19 pandemic in Saskatchewan.

“The province’s physicians wish to thank those entities that have implemented protective measures including mandating vaccinations or masking to access buildings or services,” Dr. Strydom said. “We admire their leadership and courage at a time when case numbers top 2,000, more than 100 people are hospitalized and, sadly, 601 people have died from COVID-19 in Saskatchewan.”

“So many of us have been making sacrifices for a year and a half, and we will continue to have to do so during this fourth wave,” he continued. “Unfortunately, predictive modelling is showing that with increased contacts, no provincial public health restrictions, and low vaccination rates, Saskatchewan will continue to see steep and swift growth in case numbers and hospitalizations. I daresay we already are.”

“The quicker we act, the faster we can avert these dire predictions. Organizations and businesses that are asking their visitors, clients, customers, staff, and students to follow basic public health measures are making a difference and helping to save lives. Physicians are very grateful for all that they have done and continue to do to safeguard us all.”

Dr. Strydom thanked major organizations including:

  • The Saskatchewan Roughriders, who will require fans aged 12 and over to show proof of COVID-19 vaccination or a negative COVID test, at all home games starting September 17th.
     
  • The City of Saskatoon, which has mandated the wearing of masks at Saskatoon’s indoor city facilities and when riding buses, beginning Sept. 1. It is also exploring how to implement mandatory vaccines for its employees.
     
  • The City of Regina, for re-implementing mandatory masking in indoor city facilities and on Regina Transit, effective September 4th and moving toward requiring proof of vaccination for anyone entering its facilities by September 20th.
  • Post-secondary institutions such as University of Saskatchewan and University of Regina, which require all students, staff, and faculty to show proof of vaccination or a negative COVID-19 test, and Sask Polytech, which requires full vaccinations and masking indoors at all campus locations.

Dr. Strydom also thanked businesses large and small, and various organizations that have or are considering public health measures, plus a growing number of concert venues and bars that will require patrons and staff to be fully vaccinated.

“We know these decisions aren’t easy for many businesses and organizations,” said Dr. Stydom. “We appreciate that businesses have respected the wisdom and expertise of the Medical Health Officers of this province. We know businesses and organizations have been challenged by the pandemic and have had to make adjustments. On behalf of the physicians of Saskatchewan I thank them, and hope that by taking steps now, we can all get back to normal for their benefit and the benefit of all.”

The province’s physicians wish to thank those entities that have implemented protective measures including mandating vaccinations or masking to access buildings or services. We admire their leadership and courage at a time when case numbers top 2,000, more than 100 people are hospitalized and, sadly, 601 people have died from COVID-19 in Saskatchewan.

Dr. Eben Strydom

President, Saskatchewan Medical Association

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