Dr. Deena Hinshaw, Alberta’s chief medical officer of health, confirmed 11 additional deaths due to COVID-19 Wednesday, bringing the death toll to 1,671. (Photo by Chris Schwarz/Government of Alberta)

Dr. Deena Hinshaw, Alberta’s chief medical officer of health, confirmed 11 additional deaths due to COVID-19 Wednesday, bringing the death toll to 1,671. (Photo by Chris Schwarz/Government of Alberta)

‘We have bent the curve:’ 11 new COVID-19 deaths in Alberta, 259 new cases

Central zone sits at 631 cases

Alberta is taking a different path to navigate re-opening and easing COVID-19 restrictions in 2021 compared to last spring.

Chief medical officer of health Dr. Deena Hinshaw said that is due to a number of factors, including ten times more people in hospital now, almost seven times as many active COVID-19 cases, and the presence of more infectious virus variants.

Still, Hinshaw applauded Albertans for bending the curve, as she announced just 259 new cases of the virus Wednesday.

The province now has 6,599 active cases, while 116,820 people have recovered.

There were 11 new deaths due to COVID-19 over the past 24 hours, bringing the death toll to 1,671. With about 6,837 COVID-19 tests completed since Monday, the province’s COVID-19 test positivity rate is 3.5 per cent. There are 539 people in hospital, including 94 in intensive care.

Read more: Restrictions will still be in place this summer in Alberta: Hinshaw

“To be clear, our province has made remarkable progress over these last two months, we have bent the curve,” Hinshaw said.

“Every Albertan can be proud of that. I know these gains have required deep sacrifices from many business owners and many other Albertans. At the same time, it is important that Albertans understand that we are at a very different place than we were at in May.

“Our caseload is higher, our hospitalizations are higher and the emergence of new variants poses a threat that could cause cases to spike again if we are not careful.”

Hinshaw also clarified comments she made Tuesday regarding the isolation of people who test positive with COVID-19 variant.

She said if those individuals choose to isolate at home, any close contacts in the home must isolate for 14 additional days, after the last day the person infected with the variant is at home in isolation – which lasts for 10 days.

She said with the common strain of COVID-19, isolating at home is acceptable as long as the person with the virus has a separate bathroom and bedroom and they can stay there for a full 10-day period while they are infectious.

With the more contagious variant, the chances of home isolation being effective is lower.

“In-home isolation with multiple people living in the same household is no longer considered adequate protection against transmission and that’s one thing we changed,” she said.

Read more: Anti-lockdown protesters gather while central Alberta restaurant owner in court for serving dine-in customers

Central zone sits at 631 active cases and 8,278 recovered cases.

Red Deer is up to 196 active cases.

Red Deer County sits at 19 active cases on the municipality setting, where regions are defined by metropolitan areas, cities, urban service areas, rural areas, and towns with approximately 10,000 or more people; smaller regions are incorporated into the corresponding rural area.

Lacombe County has 27 active cases of the virus and Clearwater County has 44 active.

Lacombe has 17 active, Drumheller has nine active, Sylvan Lake has 33 active and Olds has four.

Mountain View County sits at 10 active, Kneehill County has two active and the County of Stettler has five active.

Camrose has 36 active and Camrose County has seven active.

Wetaskiwin sits at 28 active.

In the local geographic setting, Wetaskiwin County, including Maskwacis, sits at 130 active cases. Rimbey, which includes West Ponoka County and parts of Lacombe County one active. Ponoka, including East Ponoka County has 13 active.

Overall, there are 307 schools, about 13 per cent, on alert or have outbreaks, with 746 cases in total.

There are 278 schools on alert, with 507 total cases.

Outbreaks have now been declared in 29 schools, with a total of 239 cases.

In-school transmission has likely occurred in 69 schools. Of these, 54 have had only one new case occur as a result.



Send your news tips

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

COVID
Red Deer down to 313 active cases of COVID-19

Alberta reports an additional 411 COVID-19 cases

Seniors in the 65-unit Piper Creek Lodge are among those waiting for COVID-19 vaccinations. (File photo by Advocate staff)
Central Alberta senior lodges anxiously waiting for COVID-19 vaccinations

“Should be at the front of the line, not the back of the line”

THE CANADIAN PRESS/Alex Panetta
Economists “cautiously hopeful” for economic recovery in Alberta

Charles St. Arnaud says Alberta’s recovery will rebound along with roll-out of the COVID-19 vaccine

Alberta’s chief medical officer of health Dr. Deena Hinshaw acknowledged that Friday would be one year since the first case of COVID-19 was identified in the province. (photography by Chris Schwarz/Government of Alberta)
Three more Red Deer COVID-19 deaths, 331 active cases in Alberta

Red Deer is down to 362 active cases of the virus

Caitlin Kraft, the sister of Jeffery Kraft, stands third from the left, holding a sign calling for the maximum sentence for Campbell, who is charged with manslaughter. (Photo by Paul Cowley)
UPDATED: Judge again rejects submission of 7-year sentence for slaying of Kraft

Tyler John Campbell charged with second-degree murder for December 2019 homicide

Hockey hall-of-fame legend Wayne Gretzky, right, watches the casket of his father, Walter Gretzky, as it is carried from the church during a funeral service in Brantford, Ont., Saturday, March 6, 2021. HE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
Walter Gretzky remembered as a man with a ‘heart of gold’ at funeral

The famous hockey father died Thursday at age 82 after battling Parkinson’s disease

Supporters rally outside court as Pastor James Coates of GraceLife Church is in court to appeal bail conditions, after he was arrested for holding day services in violation of COVID-19 rules, in Edmonton, Alta., on Thursday March 4, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jason Franson
‘Law remains valid:’ Pastor accused of violating health orders to remain in jail

The Justice Centre for Constitutional Freedoms is representing the pastor

A decommissioned pumpjack is shown at a well head on an oil and gas installation near Cremona, Alta., Saturday, Oct. 29, 2016. The Alberta Energy Regulator says it is suspending all of the licences held by an oil and gas producer with more than 2,200 wells and 2,100 pipelines after it failed to bring its operations into compliance. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
Alberta Energy Regulator suspends licences of oil and gas producer that owes $67M

The company is being asked to comply with past orders to clean up historic spills and contamination

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau holds a press conference in Ottawa Friday, March 5, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Trudeau holds firm on premiers’ health-care funding demands, COVID-19 aid comes first

Premiers argue that the current amount doesn’t keep pace with yearly cost increases of about five per cent

Pictured here is Stettler’s Jenner Smith with a guide dog from Aspen Service Dogs. An online auction will be running soon to help raise funds for Jenner to receive his very own service dog later this year. Jenner, who is four years old, was diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder in 2019. photo submitted
An online auction is planned to raise funds for a service dog for a Stettler family

Jenner Smith, four, was diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder in 2019

Walter Gretzky father of hockey hall-of-famer Wayne Gretzky waves to fans as the Buffalo Sabres play against the Toronto Maple Leafs during third period NHL hockey action in Toronto on Tuesday, Jan. 17, 2017. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
Walter Gretzky, father of the Great One, dies at 82

Canada’s hockey dad had battled Parkinson’s disease and other health issues

This Dec. 2, 2020 photo provided by Johnson & Johnson shows vials of its Janssen subsidiary’s COVID-19 vaccine in the United States. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP-Johnson & Johnson via AP
Canada approves Johnson & Johnson’s 1-shot COVID-19 vaccine

It is the 4th vaccine approved in Canada and the 1st that requires just a single dose

Most Read