The City of Regina said its facilities and services remain unaffected on Friday following the first presumptive case of COVID-19 in Saskatchewan.

The city has been monitoring the risk of novel coronavirus within the city. With no positive cases in Regina, the risk remains low within the city, Mayor Michael Fougere said.

“Our priority as a city is absolutely the health and safety and protection of all Regina residents,” Fougere said.

“Essential services like water, wastewater, police and fire will remain in place no matter what happens.”

At this time, council meetings and city events will continue as planned, but the situation could change daily, says Fougere.

“As much as we like to participate in leisure activities and recreation centres, at the end of the day, we can all live without those,” said city manager Chris Holden.

“If a lot of us are quarantined in our homes, well, we don’t need access to those services.”

As of Friday, transit continues to operate on its regular schedule. The city said buses are being disinfected every night and that more cleaning protocols are in place at public facilities.

Holden said the city has been in communication with the Saskatchewan Health Authority, Ministry of Health and Public Health Agency of Canada since December.

He added the city’s biggest concern is to protect the health of its 2,800 employees.

The city is encouraging staff members who can work from home to do so. They also have restricted all staff members from travelling outside the province and country.

“We’re maintaining a workforce at the end of the day if we lose half of our workforce they have been exposed to novel coronavirus, or have to isolate, we’ll have to prioritize service levels and services at a level that we can maintain,” Holden said.

On Friday, the Regina Fire Department activated its emergency operations centre, which allows it to coordinate tasks for emergencies.

For daily updates on which facilities and services remain open, check out the city of Regina’s website.

Chamber of commerce postpones events

The Regina & District Chamber of Commerce has postponed its winter/spring events until later this year.

According to the Chamber’s CEO John Hopkins, “we decided that the most important thing we can do as a chamber is to protect our membership as much as we can from COVID-19 and deferring our events until a later date is the most prudent course of action.”

Two of the Chamber’s major events are the Paragon Awards show, which is now slated to take place on Sept. 4, and the Take a Break Administrative Professionals Luncheon, which is now scheduled for June 9.

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

Health officials say the risk is very low for Canadians, but they caution against travel to affected areas (a list can be found here). If you do travel to these places, they recommend you self-monitor to see whether you develop symptoms, and if you do, to contact public health authorities.

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.

To prevent the virus from spreading, experts recommend frequent handwashing and coughing into your sleeve. And if you get sick, stay at home.

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

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