"We are looking seriously at the spread and determining what our next steps should be," says Alberta’s chief medical officer of health, Dr. Deena Hinshaw, as the daily number of COVID-19 cases continues to climb.

427 new COVID cases is highest in Alberta ever

Central zone has 126 active cases of COVID-19

The province identified 427 new cases of COVID-19 on Thursday, the highest number since the beginning of the pandemic.

It marked the second straight day the province recorded more than 400 cases, and there are now 3,519 active cases of the virus in Alberta.

In her twice-weekly press conference, chief medical officer of health Dr. Deena Hinshaw said there is concern and the province will look at ways to slow the spread.

“I am very concerned about the rise in numbers. We are looking seriously at the spread and determining what our next steps should be.

“The leading source for active exposures is close contact, and many of the cases we are seeing now are the result of spread over Thanksgiving, when families gathered together.

“People did not mean to spread COVID, but it is a reminder that social gatherings, where distancing and masking are not used consistently, they are a significant risk for spread,” she said.

In Ontario and Quebec, strict measures to curb the spread have already been put in place.

Ontario halted indoor dining in hot-spot regions and closed some gyms earlier this month, as well as lowering gathering limits.

In late September, Quebec put restrictions on bars and restaurants in hot-spot locations and banned home gatherings.

Despite the rise in cases, Hinshaw still encouraged Albertans to take part in Halloween activities, as long as social distancing measures are being used and masks are worn.

She said the next week will be crucial in helping fight further spread of the virus.

“We have brought down our infection rates before, and we can do it again. If you were waiting for that moment to take COVID seriously – to start going the extra mile – this is it,” Hinshaw said.

“This weekend, let’s all be extra careful and extra cautious. We are all in this together and we are powerful together.”

In Alberta, the Edmonton zone remains one of the key hot spots, with 1,718 active cases of the virus, almost half of the province’s total.

The Calgary zone has 1,260 active cases. The province currently has 112 hospitalizations, with 18 in the ICU.

In the central zone, there are 126 active cases, with four in hospital and none in the ICU.

Red Deer still sits at 32 active cases, with 125 recoveries.

There are 38 active cases of COVID-19 in Maskwacis. Red Deer County and Lacombe County each have nine active cases.

Mountain View County has four active cases and Olds has three active cases. The County of Wetaskiwin and Camrose County each have one active case.

The City of Camrose has three and Wetaskiwin has two. The County of Stettler sits at seven active cases.

Hinshaw said there are active alerts or outbreaks in about nine per cent of all schools, with a total of 561 cases. There are 101 schools with an outbreak, including 21 on the watch list, with five or more cases.

Hinshaw said non-urgent surgeries in Edmonton have been postponed due to the continued rise of COVID-19 cases in the region.

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

Just Posted

Alberta’s chief medical officer of health, Dr. Deena Hinshaw, confirmed eight additional virus-deaths Monday afternoon including one in central zone. (Photo by Chris Schwarz/Government of Alberta)
Central zone up to 1,249 active COVID-19 cases

Red Deer sits at 257 active COVID-19 cases

Agriculture Minister Devin Dreeshen (Alberta government photo)
Innisfail-Sylvan Lake to receive $5,000,000 in Municipal Operating Support Transfer funding

MLA Devin Dreeshen breaks down the funding communities will receive from MOST

Alberta’s chief medical officer of health, Dr. Deena Hinshaw, confirmed eight additional virus-deaths Monday afternoon including one in central zone. (Photo by Chris Schwarz/Government of Alberta)
New record: Red Deer at 236 active COVID cases

One more death in central zone reported

(Photo Courtesy of Fortis Alberta)
New FortisAlberta instillation in Sylvan means more reliability and shorter power interruption times

FortisAlberta recently installed a Distribution Automation system in Sylvan Lake

Sylvan Lake RCMP Detachment. Photo Courtesy of Google Maps
Sylvan Lake RCMP address three key areas of resident concern

RCMP were notified of these main areas of concern through an online Town Hall

Idyllic winter scenes are part of the atmosphere of the holiday season, and are depicted in many seasonal movies. How much do you know about holiday movies? Put your knowledge to the test. (Pixabay.com)
QUIZ: Test your knowledge of holiday movies and television specials

The festive season is a time for relaxing and enjoying some seasonal favourites

Ash and Lisa Van carry a freshly cut Christmas tree while wearing personal protective masks at a Christmas Tree Farm in Egbert, Ontario, Sunday, Nov. 29, 2020 THE CANADIAN PRESS/ Cole Burston
‘Everyone wants a tree and they want it now’: Christmas tree sales on pace for record

Anticipated demand for Christmas trees has sparked a rush by some to purchase more trees wholesale

A scene from last year’s Light the Night fundraiser at the Stettler Town and Country Museum. This year’s rendition is on a drive-through basis only, but it still promises to be a not-to-be-missed seasonal highlight. (Independent file photo)
Stettler Town and Country Museum hosts ‘Light the Night’

This year’s rendition is drive-through only, but will still prove to be a dazzling display

(Black Press File Photo)
Rimbey woman gathering Christmas gifts for seniors at Valleyview Manor

Margaret Tanasiuk says she doesn’t want anyone to feel forgotten on Christmas morning

Paramedics register patients at a drive through, pop-up COVID-19 test centre outside the Canadian Tire Centre, home of the NHL’s Ottawa Senators, in Ottawa, Sunday, Sept. 20, 2020. A new poll suggests most Canadians aren’t currently worried that people in other countries might get a COVID-19 vaccine first. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Justin Tang
Canadians not worried other countries will get COVID-19 vaccine first: poll

Forty-one per cent of respondents say they want the vaccine to be mandatory for all Canadians

Fossil finds at Mt. Stephen. (Photo: Sarah Fuller/Parks Canada)
Extreme hiking, time travel and science converge in the Burgess Shale

Climb high in the alpine and trace your family tree back millions of years – to our ocean ancestors

Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance Chrystia Freeland listens to a question from a reporter on the phone during a news conference in Ottawa, Monday, Nov. 30, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Spending too little worse than spending too much, Freeland says as Canada’s deficit tops $381B

‘The risk of providing too little support now outweighs that of providing too much’

Executive Director and Co-Founder of Rock Soup Craig Haavalsen is sleeping in a tent outside Rock Soup’s location until the Go Fund Me for Rock Soup raises $10,000. Shaela Dansereau/ Pipestone Flyer.
Putting normalcy into asking for help: New non-profit sets up in Wetaskiwin

Rock Soup non-profit is a new secular Food Bank putting down roots in Wetaskiwin.

Most Read