The next day, the province set a record with 572 new cases.
Five more deaths were reported Thursday. They involved:
- a man in his forties from the southern zone
- a woman in her 80s linked to the outbreak at Agecare Skypointe in the Calgary area
- a man in his 90s from the Calgary area who was not a continuing care resident.
- a man in his 90s linked to the Mount Royal Revera outbreak in the Calgary area.
- a woman in her 90s linked to the outbreak at the Edmonton General Care Center. The death was the fifth linked to the outbreak and was announced on Wednesday by Covenant Health.
As of Thursday, 130 people were being treated in hospitals in Alberta for COVID-19, including 18 in intensive care beds.
As of Monday, the symptom list for Albertans under 18 will change. Runny nose and sore throat will be removed from the list of symptoms that require mandatory isolation of children.
“When we developed the symptom checklist, we did so with the utmost caution, with the information available at the time, and with the intention of preventing widespread transmission in schools,” said Dr. Deena Hinshaw, Chief Medical Officer of Health for Alberta. Thursday at a press conference.
“As with all of our public health measures, we built the list knowing that we would revise our approach as necessary, based on new evidence and lessons from other jurisdictions.
The changes to the symptom list, Hinshaw said, are aimed at getting children and teens back to daycares or classrooms as quickly and safely as possible, while minimizing the risk of COVID-19.
In the past week, she said, more than 3,400 children and youth tested for COVID-19 reported having a sore throat. Just over 700 of them had a sore throat as their only symptom, and less than 1% of their tests came back positive.
More than 3,300 children have been tested with a runny nose, around 600 of them with a runny nose and no other symptoms. Less than 0.5% of people who test positive for COVID-19.
“This shows us that these symptoms in themselves are very bad indicators of whether a child has the virus,” Hinshaw said. “Based on our data to date, the risk of a child with just one of these symptoms having COVID is even lower if that child is not known to be in close contact with someone with COVID- 19. ”
The change only applies to those who have not been exposed to a known case of the disease, she said.
The regional distribution of active cases on Thursday was:
- Edmonton Area: 2,277, an increase of 22 from the previous day.
- Calgary area: 1,879, an increase of 91 from the previous day.
- North Zone: 325, an increase compared to the previous day.
- South zone: 256, the same as the day before.
- Central Zone: 162, an increase of two from the previous day.
- Unknown: 22, a decrease of two from the previous day.
Hinshaw will provide its latest update on Thursday at a press conference scheduled for 3:30 p.m.
You can watch it here live.
The 4,793 active cases reported on Wednesday were up 55 from the previous day. This total has been increasing for over a week.
The number of new cases – 410 reported on Wednesday – was down 12 from Tuesday and 94 from the previous day.
Hospitalizations increased by two on Wednesday, to 125, including 19 people in intensive care.
Four deaths were reported on Wednesday, bringing the total to 313 since the start of the pandemic in early March.