Alberta sees new record with 1,733 COVID-19 cases; RMWB sees 12 cases and 15 recoveries

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Dr. Deena Hinshaw said she is alarmed that Alberta’s COVID-19 cases continue to rise. It will be some time before health authorities can determine if recent restrictions are working, though.

“Like all Albertans, I am alarmed by the rising case numbers reported today and over the weekend,” Hinshaw said at her Monday update. “I suspect we will continue to see cases and hospitalizations rise over the next several days as we wait for the impact of the restrictions that were announced last week.”

She also warned the window to bring those cases down across the province is a small one, arguing this week “will help shape how the virus is spreading in the lead up to the holidays.”

Plans are also in the works to set aside more beds in hospitals and intensive care units for COVID-19 patients. Up to 425 ICU beds can be added from the current total of 173 beds.

During the peak of a typical flu season, Hinshaw said the province sees no more than 30 ICU patients with influenza. As of Monday, 96 people are fighting COVID-19 in ICUs across the province.

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“There is no doubt that the hospital system is under significant strain,” said Dr. David Zygun, AHS medical director for Edmonton, at the same conference. “Having said that, we have planned extensively for it and we are executing those plans as the demand increases.”

vmcdermott@postmedia.com

COVID-19 numbers for Alberta as of November 29:     

  • 58,177 people have been infected with the virus. The earliest known COVID-19 case in Alberta was detected in a blood sample collected on Feb. 24. The first case was announced on March 5.     
  • Of those cases, 41,182 people have recovered, or nearly 70.7 per cent of all cases.     
  • 1,733 new cases were reported in the past 24 hours, bringing the active total to 16,454.     
  • 453 people are in hospital, with 96 people in intensive care units. Privacy regulations means Alberta Health cannot release how many COVID-19 patients are being treated in local hospitals or health centres.     
  • Eight more people have died from COVID-19, totalling 541. The majority of people who have died from COVID-19 also had high blood pressure, dementia, cardiovascular disease and diabetes.     
  • 9,437 tests for COVID-19 were completed on Nov. 29.     
  • To date, 2,255,072 tests for COVID-19 have been carried out on 1,473,584 people.  

COVID-19 numbers in Fort McMurray:     

  • 10 new active cases in past 24 hours, bringing known active total to 193. The first case was reported in the city on March 19.    
  • 15 new recoveries in past 24 hours, bringing total to 535.     
  • Masks in public spaces become mandatory on Oct. 26, after 51 active COVID-19 cases were reported in the Wood Buffalo region. The order will be assessed every 30 days and remain if there are more than 50 active cases.  
  • Privacy regulations means Alberta Health cannot release how many COVID-19 patients are being treated in local hospitals or health centres.     
  • Two people have died from COVID-19 in Fort McMurray, with the last death reported on Nov. 15. The first death was reported Sept. 8.  

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COVID-19 in rural areas:     

  • Two new COVID-19 cases in rural communities in past 24 hours, bringing total to 26 cases.
  • No new recoveries in Wood Buffalo’s rural areas, keeping total at 80.  
  • AHS has not confirmed which rural communities have active COVID-19 cases, only community leaders have.     
  • Masks in public spaces become mandatory on Oct. 26, after 51 active COVID-19 cases were reported in the Wood Buffalo region. The order will be assessed every 30 days and remain if there are more than 50 active cases.  
  • Privacy regulations means Alberta Health cannot release how many COVID-19 patients are being treated in local hospitals or health centres.    
  • There have been no deaths from COVID-19 in the RMWB’s rural areas.  

COVID-19 outbreaks at Wood Buffalo’s schools:     

  • Information on school outbreaks can be found online from Alberta Health Services. No school in Wood Buffalo has been ordered to close.     
  • Father Patrick Mercredi Catholic High School has been added to the provincial ‘watch’ list after five positive cases were reported in relation to the school. 
  • On Nov. 14, an outbreak was declared at Holy Trinity High School. 
  • On Nov. 25, an outbreak was declared at the Fort McMurray Islamic School.
  • An outbreak is declared when five people linked to a public site, such as a workplace, test positive for COVID-19. At continuing care centres and schools, the number is two.     
  • An outbreak is over when no new COVID-19 cases have been reported after 30 days.  

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COVID-19 outbreaks at Wood Buffalo’s workplaces:     

  • Information on workplace outbreaks can be found online from Alberta Health Services.     
  • Syncrude’s Mildred Lake site declared an outbreak on Sept. 3 when 11 workers tested positive for the virus.     
  • Suncor’s base plant declared an outbreak on Sept. 4 after five workers tested positive for the virus.     
  • Canadian Natural’s Horizon site has declared an outbreak.     
  • Canadian Natural’s Albian site has declared an outbreak.     
  • Suncor’s Firebag site has declared an outbreak.     
  • Imperial Oil’s Kearl Lake site has declared an outbreak.     
  • An outbreak is declared when five people linked to a public site, such as a workplace, test positive for COVID-19. At continuing care centres and schools, the number is two.     
  • An outbreak is over when no new COVID-19 cases have been reported after 30 days.