First case of Omicron variant confirmed in Alberta, patient remains in quarantine – .

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First case of Omicron variant confirmed in Alberta, patient remains in quarantine – .


CALGARY –

The Government of Alberta has announced the first confirmed case of the Omicron variant of COVID-19 in the province as the federal government implements new testing rules for travelers returning to Canada.

Chief Medical Officer of Health Dr. Deena Hinshaw disclosed the first case of Omicron in Alberta during Tuesday afternoon’s COVID-19 update.

“This case has been confirmed in a traveler returning from Nigeria and the Netherlands,” Hinshaw said. “The individual tested positive despite being asymptomatic and I can confirm that the individual has not left quarantine since arriving after international travel. “

According to Hinshaw, the infected person has not left quarantine and she and her family have been told of the positive test.

“At this time, this is the only confirmed case of Omicron in the province. “

On Monday, the province confirmed 156 Albertans were in quarantine after returning from a trip to a southern African country over concerns about the potential spread of the modified Omicron variant.

“While it’s important that we all continue to remain vigilant in the face of COVID-19 to protect ourselves and others, we don’t want Albertans to be alarmed,” Hinshaw said.

“As I mentioned yesterday, we anticipated the arrival of this variant in the province based on what we saw with other strains of COVID-19. We are well prepared for this eventuality and have the necessary tools in place to monitor this case and any potential spread of the variant. “

With Omicron variant cases confirmed in more provinces, the federal government is imposing new testing rules for people arriving in the country from all nations except the United States.

“All air travelers from outside of Canada, except the United States, will now be required to be tested at the airport they land at in Canada, whether or not they are vaccinated,” said the Federal Minister of Health, Jean-Yves Duclos.

“They will then have to self-isolate until they get the result of their test,” he said. The minister said Canada is considering possibly including returning travelers from the United States in its new testing rules.

Canada is also expanding the list of countries facing a federal travel ban.

All foreign nationals who have visited Nigeria, Malawi and Egypt at any time during the past 14 days will be refused entry to Canada, the government said on Tuesday afternoon.

The three countries join South Africa, Mozambique, Namibia, Zimbabwe, Botswana, Lesotho and Eswatini as countries already under Canadian travel restrictions due to concerns about the Omicron variant.

As of Tuesday, there had also been confirmed cases of Omicron in British Columbia, Ontario and Quebec.

With files from Jordan Kanygin of CTV Calgary

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