May 14, 2020 provincial COVID-19 news (video)
Stage one of Alberta’s relaunch strategy has begun as restrictions are gradually lifted, with a more gradual reopening in Calgary and Brooks.
Alberta’s COVID-19 hospitalization rates remain low with 65 people currently in hospital, 10 of whom are in intensive care. In total, 5,205 Albertans have recovered from COVID-19. One more Albertan has died.
50 new cases have been reported, bringing the number of total active cases to 1,131.
Cases have been identified in all zones across the province:
915 active cases and 3,414 recovered cases in the Calgary zone
113 active cases and 1,053 recovered cases in the South zone
63 active cases and 441 recovered cases in the Edmonton zone
20 active cases and 193 recovered cases in the North zone
11 active cases and 85 recovered cases in the Central zone
Nine active cases and 19 recovered cases in zones yet to be confirmed
Additional information, including the total number of cases, is reported online.
There have been 631 cases to date with an unknown exposure.
There have been 185,545 people tested for COVID-19 and a total of 200,218 tests performed by the lab. In the last 24 hours, 4,816 tests have been completed.
The total deaths are 121: 85 in the Calgary zone; 15 in the North zone; 12 in the Edmonton zone; eight in the South zone; and one in the Central zone.
There are 100 active cases and 569 recovered cases at continuing care facilities; 87 residents at these facilities have died.
There are 16 active cases among workers from the Cargill meat processing plant in High River, and 932 have recovered.
There are 14 active cases among workers from JBS Foods Canada in Brooks, and 627 have recovered.
Five active cases have been confirmed at Harmony Beef, and 35 individuals have recovered.
Workplace plans to address COVID-19
All workplaces are expected to develop and implement policies and procedures to address COVID-19, including a plan to reduce the risk of transmission among staff and customers.
The completed plan must be posted in places of business or online within seven days of the public being able to attend the business. Information and the plan template is available at alberta.ca/BizConnect.
Guidance available on mask use
Where physical distancing isn’t possible, wearing non-medical masks can help limit the risk of exposure to COVID-19, especially when used with other preventative measures.
Details on non-medical masks, including when and how to use them and what to consider when making or buying them, is available online.
Alberta’s provincial historic sites, museums and archives
The Royal Alberta Museum is reopening to the public on May 16 and the Royal Tyrrell Museum is reopening on May 22.
All facilities will follow public health guidelines regarding cleaning and encouraging physical distancing. The reopening status of Alberta’s other historic sites, museums and archives can be found at history.alberta.ca.
Stage one of relaunch has begun
Stage one of Alberta’s relaunch strategy puts safety first as restrictions are gradually lifted and Albertans begin to get back to work. Calgary and Brooks will see a more gradual reopening, taking into account higher case numbers in these two cities, to balance public safety with the need to get businesses open and services restored for Albertans.
Supporting Alberta businesses through relaunch
The Alberta Biz Connect web page provides business owners with information on health and safety guidelines for general workplaces and sector-specific guidelines for those able to open in stage one of relaunch to ensure businesses can reopen safely during the COVID-19 pandemic.
For more information, visit alberta.ca/BizConnect
Driver’s licence and vehicle renewal
Albertans are reminded that if their driver’s licence, ID card, or vehicle registration expired or is set to expire March 17 through May 14, they have until May 15 to renew. Albertans whose documents are expiring are encouraged to connect with their local registry agent by phone and explore options to renew their documents by phone, secure email, fax or mail.
The ABTraceTogether app will enhance current manual contact tracing and capacity, and facilitate early detection to help reduce the spread of the virus and better protect Albertans. 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 does not track the user’s physical location and does not use GPS. Protecting privacy is paramount; all contact data is only on the user’s phone and is deleted after 21 days.
The app currently has 169,367 registered users.
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 are available 24 hours a day, seven days a week. The Canadian Mental Health Association has a variety of resources available 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 is available at 310-1818 to get 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.
The requirement for in-person Emergency Protection Order (EPO) applications for those fleeing family violence has been temporarily suspended; provincial courts can now hear applications for EPOs via telecommunication.
Information sheets and other resources on family violence prevention are available at alberta.ca/COVID19.
The most important measure Albertans can take to prevent respiratory illnesses, including COVID-19, is to practise good hygiene.
This includes cleaning your hands regularly for at least 20 seconds, avoiding touching your face, coughing or sneezing into your elbow or sleeve, and disposing of tissues appropriately.
Any individual exhibiting symptoms of COVID-19, including cough, fever, runny nose, sore throat or shortness of breath, is eligible for testing. People can access testing by completing the COVID-19 self-assessment online. A separate self-assessment tool is available for health-care and shelter workers, enforcement and first responders. After completing the form, there is no need to call 811.
Albertans are asked to share acts of kindness they have experienced in their community during this difficult time by using the hashtag #AlbertaCares.
Provincial Press Release May 14, 2020 @ 5:16 PM