June 12, 2020 provincial COVID-19 update (video)
Hospitalization rates remain low with 53 people in hospital, six of whom are in intensive care. In total, 6,811 Albertans have recovered from COVID-19.
30 new cases bring the number of total active cases to 386.
Cases have been identified in all zones across the province:
Calgary zone: 202 active cases and 4,737 recovered
South zone: 21 active cases and 1,241 recovered
Edmonton zone: 149 active cases and 515 recovered
North zone: 10 active cases and 222 recovered
Central zone: two active cases and 85 recovered
Two active cases and 11 recovered cases in zones to be confirmed
Additional information, including case totals, is online.
To date, 603 cases have an unknown exposure.
So far, labs have performed 325,148 tests on 291,329 Albertans, with 7,746 tests completed in the last 24 hours.
There are no new deaths to report.
Deaths total 149: 110 in the Calgary zone; 16 in the North zone; 13 in the Edmonton zone; nine in the South zone; and one in the Central zone.
There are 26 active cases and 697 recovered cases at continuing care facilities; 115 facility residents have died.
Stage two of relaunch starts today
Low active COVID-19 case numbers means stage two of Alberta’s relaunch strategy will safely begin today.
More businesses, sport and recreation services will be open. Some larger gatherings will be permitted.
Public health guidance must be followed.
Stage three depends on success in stage two. Success will be determined by the following factors: active case numbers, infection rates, health-care system capacity based on the number of cases in hospital and intensive care.
For more information, visit alberta.ca/RelaunchStrategy.
Getting ready for 2020-21 school year
A comprehensive re-entry plan for the 2020-21 school year allows schools and parents to prepare for learning while putting students and staff safety first.
The plan offers guidance on a wide range of operational issues including hygiene and health requirements, student learning, transportation and diploma exams. It also addresses mental health and psychological supports for students and staff.
For more information, read the news release.
Increased access to child care
Child care is critical to Alberta’s economic recovery as more parents and families start returning to work.
Under stage two of relaunch, the maximum cohort group size will be increased from 10 to 30, including staff and children.
Health screening, cleaning, disinfecting and safe on-site practices will remain in place.
Updated guidance for safely reopening and operating child care programs is available at alberta.ca/bizconnect.
Relaxing the 30-day limit for prescription drugs
As of June 15, pharmacists can begin to give out larger quantities of prescription drugs again, up to a 100-day supply.
Pharmacists should use their professional judgment and dispense a 30-day supply when necessary for specific drugs that still have shortages or supply chain issues.
Government, industry, pharmacy organizations, and other health sector partners continue to monitor supply levels. If there is evidence that there is not enough supply, or that drugs are being stockpiled, government could re-introduce dispensing limits.
Free non-medical masks
Albertans can get four free non-medical masks per person at any Alberta A&W, McDonald’s Canada and Tim Hortons drive-thru while supplies last, no purchase necessary.
Masks are at drive-thrus only. Those who can’t get to a drive-thru are encouraged to check other options here.
Supporting Alberta businesses through relaunch
The Alberta Biz Connect web page has health and safety guidelines for general workplaces, and sector-specific guidelines. As we have entered stage two, businesses are encouraged to continue to check for new and updated guidance documents.
A template on the Biz Connect website can help businesses plan how to protect employees and patrons from infection. Completing the template is voluntary.
The next media availability with the chief medical officer of health will be held on June 15.
Albertans downloading tracer app
The ABTraceTogether app enhances manual contact tracing and capacity, and facilitates early detection. It means Albertans will be contacted more quickly if they are at risk.
Use of the app is voluntary; users must opt in. The app currently has 204,837 registered users.
Protecting privacy is paramount. The app does not track the user’s physical location and does not use GPS. All contact data is only on the user’s phone and is deleted after 21 days.
Mental health supports
Confidential supports are available to help with mental health concerns. The Mental Health Help Line at 1-877-303-2642 and the Addiction Help Line at 1-866-332-2322 operate 24 hours a day, seven days a week. The Canadian Mental Health Association has resources at mentalhealthweek.ca.
The Kids Help Phone is available 24-7 and offers professional counselling, information and referrals and volunteer-led, text-based support to young people by texting CONNECT to 686868.
Online resources provide advice on handling stressful situations and ways to talk with children.
Family violence prevention
A 24-hour Family Violence Information Line at 310-1818 provides anonymous help in more than 170 languages.
Alberta’s One Line for Sexual Violence is available at 1-866-403-8000, from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m.
People fleeing family violence can call local police or the nearest RCMP detachment to apply for an Emergency Protection Order. The requirement for in-person applications is temporarily suspended.
Information sheets and other resources on family violence prevention are at alberta.ca/COVID19.
Good hygiene is the most important measure to prevent respiratory illnesses, including COVID-19.
Wash your hands regularly for at least 20 seconds, avoid touching your face, cough or sneeze into your elbow or sleeve, and dispose of tissues appropriately.
Albertans are asked to share acts of kindness they have experienced in their community during this difficult time by using the hashtag #AlbertaCares.
The Alberta Connects Contact Centre (310-4455) is available to Albertans Monday to Friday, from 8:15 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
Provincial Press Release June 12, 2020 @ 4:00 PM