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What you need to know about COVID-19 in Alberta on Tuesday, May 12

A possible reopen date is looming this week, with a final decision yet to be made, and the government has released guidelines for businesses wondering what that reopening will entail.

Businesses now have some guidance for possible reopening on Thursday

A food server wearing a protective face mask waits on customers in St. Petersburg, Fla. Some restaurants in Alberta could be open as early as Thursday. (Chris O'Meara/The Associated Press)

The latest:

(Evelyne Asselin/CBC)

What you need to know today in Alberta:

The province released guidelines for businesses that could open up as early as Thursday, including restaurants and bars. Many business owners have been waiting for the guidelines as the first deadline looms. The province says they can send their industry-specific questions to bizconnect@gov.ab.ca.

Watch: COVID-19: What has 2 months of physical distancing accomplished?

Experts answer questions about the COVID-19 pandemic two months after it was declared. 6:40

The decision on whether to open up or not on May 14 has not yet been made official, but it's expected the government will make an announcement Wednesday. Provincial officials are expected to discuss the reopening at Tuesday's emergency management cabinet meeting.

Dr. Deena Hinshaw, Alberta's chief medical officer, says the province's reopening strategy will only go ahead if hospital rates are stable, and haven't increased by more than five per cent in the last week. She also said ICU capacity must remain less 50 per cent, and cases should remain stable and not spike suddenly.

One Calgary doctor says she's concerned about the possible impacts of reopening on vulnerable workers, including those employed in lower-paying sectors with little job security. 

The regional breakdown of cases reported Tuesday was:

  • Calgary zone: 1,017 active, 3,225 recovered.
  • South zone: 237 active, 918 recovered.
  • Edmonton zone: 60 active, 436 recovered.
  • North zone: 26 active, 186 recovered.
  • Central zone:  15 active, 82 recovered.
  • Unknown: 6 active, 19 recovered.
(Evelyne Asselin/CBC)

What you need to know today in Canada:

The current border deal between Canada and the United States, which prohibits non-essential travel between the two countries, is set to expire on May 21, but B.C. officials don't want it to reopen. Neither does Ontario Premier Doug Ford. 

Watch: Will there be a second lockdown?

An infectious disease specialist answers your questions about the COVID-19 pandemic including whether there will be a second lockdown. 2:37

Deputy Prime Minister Chrystia Freeland said Monday that talks between the federal government and the United States were ongoing, while Justin Trudeau said any easing of border restrictions will be done carefully.

As of 8 a.m. ET on Tuesday, Canada had reported 69,981 confirmed and presumptive coronavirus cases, with 33,007 of those cases listed by provinces and territories as resolved or recovered. A CBC News tally of coronavirus deaths based on provincial data, regional health information and CBC's reporting stood at 5,100.

Self-assessment and supports:

Alberta Health Services has an online self-assessment tool that you can use to determine if you have symptoms of COVID-19.

The province says Albertans who have returned to Canada from other countries must self-isolate. Unless your situation is critical and requires a call to 911, Albertans are advised to call Health Link at 811 before visiting a physician, hospital or other health-care facility.

Watch: The problems in long-term care that COVID-19 could change.

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If you have symptoms, even mild, you are to self-isolate for 10 days from the onset of symptoms. 

You can find Alberta Health Services' latest coronavirus updates here.

The province also operates a confidential mental health support line at 1-877-303-2642 and addiction help line at 1-866-332-2322, available from 7 a.m. to 11 p.m., seven days a week. 

Online resources are available for advice on handling stressful situations and ways to talk with children.

There is a 24-hour family violence information line at 310-1818 to get anonymous help in more than 170 languages, and Alberta's One Line for Sexual Violence is available at 1-866-403-8000, from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m.

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