Everything you need to know about COVID-19 in Alberta on Wednesday, June 9
Hinshaw says province considering speeding up second dose appointments
The latest COVID-19 numbers:
- The province reported 313 new cases and five more deaths on Wednesday. Active cases fell to 4,204.
- Total active cases have dropped by more than 20,000 over the past month.
- There were 329 people in hospital in Alberta — a decrease of seven from the previous day. Of those, 83 were in intensive care units. Sunday represented the first time since April 16 that fewer than 100 COVID-19 patients have been in ICU beds in Alberta.
- Provincial labs completed 8,545 tests over the past 24 hours. The positivity rate was 3.8 per cent.
- There have now been 2,256 COVID deaths.
- 229,771 Albertans are considered to have recovered from COVID-19.
- The latest R-value reported for the province was 0.74, meaning the virus is spreading to less than one person for each confirmed case.
- Alberta is once again screening all positive cases of COVID-19 for variants of concern.
- 241 schools, or 10 per cent of schools in the province, are on alert or have outbreaks with 2,007 total cases. In-school transmission is believed to have occurred in 882 schools since Jan. 11.
- Four units at the Foothills Medical Centre in Calgary are dealing with COVID-19 outbreaks, with 20 cases of the rapidly spreading delta variant, or B.1.617.2, detected on two of the units. A total of 25 patients and four health-care workers have tested positive COVID-19 in the four affected units, according to Alberta Health Services. All but one case were acquired in-hospital.
- As of June 7, there are COVID-19 outbreaks at these AHS and Covenant Health acute care facilities:
- North Zone: Athabasca Healthcare Centre, Bonnyville Health Centre, Queen Elizabeth II Regional Hospital.
- Edmonton Zone: University of Alberta Hospital (two units on outbreak).
- Central Zone: Killam Health Centre, Tofield Health Centre.
- Calgary Zone: Foothills Medical Centre (four units on outbreak), South Health Campus.
The latest on vaccines:
- Alberta is looking at the possibility of accelerating second dose appointments as it bolsters its contact tracing work to contain the spread of highly infectious variants, Dr. Deena Hinshaw said Tuesday.
- The province's chief medical officer of health said the delta variant, first identified in India and now driving a wave of new cases in the U.K., made up about five per cent of the total number of new variants found in the province last week.
- Alberta Premier Jason Kenney says 115,000 more people need to get their first shot of COVID-19 vaccine if the final stage of the province's reopening plan is to go ahead later this month.
- At a news conference Monday, Kenney said there were 100,000 bookings over the next week. The province has said Stage 3, which could happen as early as June 24, would see all health restrictions lifted as long as 70 per cent of Albertans 12 and over had received at least one shot.
- Dr. Deena Hinshaw, the province's chief medical officer of health, said vaccine bookings have slowed due to a variety of factors, such as convenience, and that the province is looking at potentially opening second dose eligibility sooner.
- Alberta's reopening plan is tied directly to vaccination and hospital rates. Stage 2, which is set to launch Thursday, required 60 per cent of eligible Albertans aged 12 and older to be vaccinated. When the 70-per-cent threshold is reached and hospitalizations are remaining below 500, a two-week countdown to Stage 3 of the plan will be triggered
WATCH | Kenney speaks about the vaccination program:
- 67.2 per cent of eligible Albertans, ages 12 and up, have now received at least one dose of vaccine.
- 598,139 Albertans are fully immunized (two doses).
- Alberta has now administered 3,157,862 doses of COVID-19 vaccine, including Pfizer-BioNTech, Moderna and AstraZeneca-Oxford.
- Under Alberta's newly expanded vaccination rollout, anyone who got their first dose in March can now get their second shot. Anyone who received a dose in April can start booking June 14, and those vaccinated in May can start booking June 28.
- You do not need to wait to be contacted by AHS or a pharmacy to book your second dose once you become eligible. Bookings for first doses remain the top priority, the province said.
- The province says it will follow the advice of the National Advisory Committee on Immunization and allow those who received the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine for their first dose to get either Pfizer-BioNTech or Moderna for the second, or they can get another AstraZeneca vaccine shot.
- The province says 96 per cent of cases since Jan. 1, 2021 were contracted by people who were unvaccinated or who were diagnosed within two weeks from having a first dose of vaccine.
- Just 0.2 per cent of Albertans who have received their first dose of vaccine have been diagnosed with COVID-19 two weeks or more after receiving the shot. Over that same period, 93 per cent of the people who needed hospital care were either not vaccinated or were diagnosed with infection within two weeks of receiving their first dose.
- AHS is offering no appointment, first dose COVID-19 immunization clinics over a three day period at the Telus Convention Centre on June 8, 9 and 10. These clinics are for first doses only. Up to 2,000 Pfizer immunizations per day can be provided.
- A mobile vaccination clinic led by Siksika Health Services will begin offering vaccine shots on June 8 to marginalized people, temporary foreign workers and individuals who are homeless or in supportive living facilities.
- AHS has opened a drive-thru immunization clinic in Calgary. The clinic, located at 911 32 Ave. N.E., will be by appointment only. It will operate 8:20 a.m. to 9:20 p.m. seven days a week, with capacity for up to 1,000 appointments each day. A maximum of four people in each vehicle can be immunized, but all will require booked appointments.
The latest on restrictions and reopenings:
- Stage 1 of the reopening plan began on June 1. Albertans can now book appointments at salons or other personal wellness services. Outdoor public gatherings can consist of 10 people, and restaurants are open for patio service.
- Retail shops can now allow 15 per cent of their fire code occupancy, or five customers, whichever is greater.
- Indoor social gatherings remain banned.
- The three-stage "open for summer" plan is tied directly to vaccination rates and hospitalization numbers, Kenney said.
- With more than 60 per cent of Albertans having received at least one dose of vaccine, and with hospitalizations are below 500 and declining, the province is set to move to Stage 2 on June 10.
- What Stage 2 entails:
- Outdoor social gatherings increase to 20 people, with distancing. Wedding ceremonies may occur with up to 20 attendees.
- Receptions are permitted outdoors only.
- Funeral ceremonies remain unchanged with up to 20 people permitted, not including facility staff, funeral clergy or organizers not considered guests. Receptions are permitted outdoors only.
- Restaurants may seat tables with up to six people, indoors or outdoors. Dining parties are no longer restricted to households only. Physical distancing and other restrictions still apply.
- Retail capacity increases to one-third of fire code occupancy (must maintain ability to distance).
- Capacity for places of worship increases to one-third of fire code occupancy.
- Gyms and other indoor fitness open for solo and drop-in activities with three-metre distancing between participants and fitness classes may resume with three-metre distancing.
- Indoor settings may open with up to one-third of fire code occupancy, including indoor recreation centres. This includes arenas, cinemas, theatres, museums, art galleries and libraries.
- Indoor and outdoor youth and adult sports resume with no restrictions.
- Youth activities, such as day camps and play centres, may resume, with restrictions.
- Personal and wellness services can resume walk-in services.
- Post-secondary institutions can resume in-person learning.
- The work-from-home order is lifted but still recommended.
- Outdoor fixed seating facilities (e.g., grandstands) can open with one-third seated capacity.
- Public outdoor gatherings increase to 150 people (e.g. concerts/festivals), with restrictions. Distancing and masking requirements remain in effect.
- Stage 3: Two weeks after 70 per cent of Albertans age 12-plus have received at least one dose of vaccine.
- All restrictions are lifted, including the ban on indoor social gatherings.
- Isolation requirements for confirmed cases of COVID-19 and some protective measures in continuing care settings remain.
- A full list of current restrictions is available on the province's website.
- Albertans can track the province's immunization progress on alberta.ca.
(Note the latest daily count of new cases in the above chart will usually vary slightly from the net new cases Alberta Health announces each day. For more on why, click here.)
See which regions are being hit hardest:
Here is the detailed regional breakdown of active cases as reported by the province on Wednesday.
- Calgary zone: 1,691.
- Edmonton zone: 1,114.
- Central zone: 574.
- South zone: 200.
- North zone: 624.
- Unknown: 1.
You can see active cases by local health area on the following interactive map. Scroll, zoom and click on the map for more information:
Find out which neighbourhoods or communities have the most cases, how hard people of different ages have been hit, the ages of people in hospital, how Alberta compares to other provinces and more in: Here are the latest COVID-19 statistics for Alberta — and what they mean.
Here are the latest Alberta COVID-19 stories:
How Alberta compares to other provinces and territories:
With files from The Canadian Press