Alberta chief medical officer of health Dr. Deena Hinshaw updates media on the Covid-19 situation in Edmonton on Friday March 20, 2020. nbsp;Alberta is reporting it’s highest daily number of COVID-19 cases, with 364 new infections. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jason Franson

Alberta chief medical officer of health Dr. Deena Hinshaw updates media on the Covid-19 situation in Edmonton on Friday March 20, 2020. nbsp;Alberta is reporting it’s highest daily number of COVID-19 cases, with 364 new infections. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jason Franson

Voluntary restrictions in Edmonton area as COVID-19 case numbers keep climbing

Edmonton’s Misericordia Community Hospital announced its second outbreak Thursday

Alberta’s top doctor asked people in the Edmonton area Thursday to voluntarily abide by new health measures, as the province’s COVID-19 cases climbed to its highest daily number with the majority in the capital region.

Chief medical health officer Dr. Deena Hinshaw reported 364 new infections in Alberta, with 276 of those in the Edmonton zone.

The province previously reported a high of 336 cases on April 23. Case numbers had steadily declined but began rising recently, as they have is many areas across the country.

Hinshaw said there are currently 1,251 active cases in Edmonton — double that in Calgary.

Edmonton’s Misericordia Community Hospital announced its second outbreak Thursday, with 10 cases among patients and staff. It said 29 health-care workers are self-isolating as a result.

Hinshaw said there have been several other outbreaks linked to workplaces and social gatherings in the city.

“The Edmonton zone now faces a crucial juncture.,” Hinshaw told a news conference.

“It typically takes one to two weeks before a rise in cases contributes to a rise in hospitalizations.

“We must take action to slow the virus’s spread in the zone and make sure the health system can continue supporting Albertans.”

She announced three voluntarily public health measures for Edmonton-area residents.

She wants people to limit family gatherings and social events, including weddings and funerals, to 15 people.

She said they should wear masks indoors at work, unless they are alone in cubicles or offices or separated from others with barriers

And she wants them to limit their interactions to three cohorts: home, school and a social or sporting group.

Hinshaw emphasized that the restrictions are voluntary and a good idea for everyone in Alberta.

“I believe people will do their part to protect themselves and their family, friends and neighbours.”

Last month, when Alberta was reporting new daily cases of about 100 and more, Premier Jason Kenney said he had no plan to follow moves by other provinces in closing or constraining businesses again.

Mandatory restrictions put in place at the beginning of the pandemic in Canada in the spring were gradually eased in Alberta in June.

Hinshaw said the voluntary measures give Edmontonians an “opportunity” to bend the curve.

She suggested people start with changing any big Thanksgiving plans. The upcoming long weekend is not the time to gather in large groups, travel long distances or share food, she said.

“Keep your Thanksgiving small. Keep it safe.”

The Canadian Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Want to support local journalism? Make a donation here.

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

Just Posted

Ecole H.J. Cody School. File Photo
Sylvan Lake high school temporarily moves to online classes

Over the weekend, H.J. Cody reported six positive cases of COVID-19

.
Alberta confirmed more than 1,500 COVID-19 cases Sunday

Central zone active cases slightly up

A nurse gets a swab ready at a temporary COVID-19 test clinic in Montreal, on Friday, May 15, 2020. Health Canada has reversed course on home test kits for COVID-19, saying it will now review applications for such devices. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Paul Chiasson
Kyle Charles poses for a photo in Edmonton on Friday, Nov. 20, 2020. Marvel Entertainment, the biggest comic book publisher in the world, hired the 34-year-old First Nations illustrator as one of the artists involved in Marvel Voice: Indigenous Voices #1 in August. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jason Franson
VIDEO: Indigenous illustrator of new Marvel comic hopes Aboriginal women feel inspired

Kyle Charles says Indigenous women around the world have reached out

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau speak to the media about the COVID-19 virus outside Rideau Cottage in Ottawa, Friday, Nov. 20, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Long-awaited federal rent subsidy program for businesses hurt by COVID-19 opens today

The new program will cover up to 65 per cent of rent or commercial mortgage interest

Traffic crosses over the Lions Gate Bridge from North Vancouver into Vancouver on July 2, 2015. Motorists would have to pay a fee to drive into downtown Vancouver under the city's plan to slow climate change but one expert warns it could pose financial hardship for some. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Vancouver’s climate plan ‘first 10 steps in a journey of 10,000,’ says expert

Almost 40 per cent of Vancouver’s carbon pollution comes from vehicles

Alberta has 1,910 active cases of COVID-19 as of Wednesday. Red Deer is reporting five active cases, with 108 recovered. (File photo)
After COVID-related transplant delays, 16-year-old N.S. girl gets lung transplant

‘This is the difficult time now of seeing Tahlia in ICU hooked up to 15 IVs and sedated’

Britain's Princess Anne The Princess Royal, right, talks to NATO delegates from left, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Britain's Prime Minister Boris Johnson, during a reception at Buckingham Palace, in London, as Nato leaders attend to mark 70 years of the alliance, Tuesday Dec. 3, 2019.  While NATO leaders are publicly professing unity as they gather for the London summit, several seem to have been caught in an unguarded exchange on camera apparently gossiping about U.S. President Donald Trump’s behaviour. In footage recorded during the Buckingham Palace reception on Tuesday, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau was seen standing in a huddle with French President Emmanuel Macron, British Prime Minister Boris Johnson, Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte and Britain’s Princess Anne. (Yui Mok/Pool via AP)
Canada, Britain strike new trade, beating Brexit, incorporating expiring EU pact

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and British counterpart, Boris Johnson, announced the deal Saturday

COVID-19. (Image courtesy CDC)
An individual in Clearview school division (Stettler and region) has tested positive for COVID-19

Case affects students and staff at Wm. E. Hay Stettler Secondary School, Stettler Elementary School, and Erskine School, officials say

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau makes an announcement at the Ornamental Gardens in Ottawa on Thursday, Nov. 19, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Nix non-essential travel, stay home as much as possible as COVID 2nd wave surges: Trudeau

Trudeau was back outfront Rideau Cottage amid concerning COVID-19 projections from Dr. Theresa Tam

(THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward)
School custodians ‘unsung’ heroes during pandemic

Schools have increased the sanitization of key, high-touch areas

Most Read