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Lloydminster medical lead continues to advocate for vaccination as local COVID cases rise

Dr Kevin Govender, the Site Lead of the Lloydminster Hospital, is continuing to urge vaccination and precaution as they see an increase of COVID-19 cases in the Lloydminster area.

In a phone call to MyLloydminsterNow, Govender says they’ve seen a spike locally recently, with 82 per cent of people newly getting the virus being non-vaccinated or unvaccinated, ushering in some of the highest caseloads since the pandemic began.

Along with the increases in cases here in Lloydminster, he says they’ve seen more people have to come to the Lloydminster Hospital seeking treatment for the virus.

He explains that his concerns are on the public’s health and the staff and infrastructure of the hospital being able to maintain under pressure during the ongoing increased caseload.

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“The system, potentially, can become overwhelmed, as we have seen across the country and across the world. Lloydminster is not immune to this kind of problem. There [are] definitely some issues with staff burnout, but we are definitely coping at the moment.”

Govender says even though public health orders have been taken out of effect by the provincial government, people should consider the risk and act accordingly. This could mean avoiding large gatherings, socially distancing and masking when appropriate in heavily trafficked or close spaces.

He explains that while the public health orders are no longer mandated by law, it’s especially a matter of care for others that should compel people to consider bringing these cautions into their own lives.

“If you get COVID, you may be fine, but if you inadvertently pass COVID on to someone at risk, their outcome may be not so good, so that’s the problem. I think having a collective sense of goodwill, or a collective sense of community, is important and this is what I would encourage.”

Most of all, Govender says vaccination is important, noting that in the much smaller group of breakthrough cases of COVID-19 impacting the vaccinated, their symptoms are very mild.

He points to Health Canada statistics that show of the 52 million doses of vaccine given out, there have been only 3,522 serious adverse effects in people. Breaking this down, it’s 0.007 per cent.

“So, as you can see, that is a significantly low number in terms of potential adverse effects, but as of today, there’s been over 27,000 Canadians who have died of COVID-19.”

According to SHA data, as of September 2nd, there are 194 active COVID-19 cases in Northwest Region 2, which houses Lloydminster. The SHA also notes there are 37 new cases as of this day.

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