“We need to take current numbers as a warning and do what we need to do to prevent infections from spreading widely and quickly,” says Dr. Deena Hinshaw, Alberta’s chief medical officer of health. (Photo courtesy of Government of Alberta)

Active COVID-19 cases nearly doubled since July 9

114 new cases Thursday, 1,293 active cases across Alberta

Alberta’s chief medical officer of health delivered a grim warning to the province Thursday.

Dr. Deena Hinshaw, in her twice-weekly briefing, explained that once again, the rising number of cases should be a concern to Albertans.

There were 114 new cases Thursday, along with two additional deaths, bringing the death toll to 176.

Hinshaw said that even more concerning is the steady rise in hospitalizations and ICU stays. Currently, 106 people across the province are in hospital, the highest since April 30, and 21 people are in intensive care, the largest total since May 1.

Since July 9, active cases across the province have risen from 590 to more than 1,300.

“The message is clear: we need to learn from our own experiences and the experiences of others. We need to take current numbers as a warning and do what we need to do to prevent infections from spreading widely and quickly,” Hinshaw said.

“We are all tired of COVID-19. But this virus doesn’t care, we have no choice but to learn how to live with it.”

Central zone cases also continue to rise. In the region, there are now 161 active cases, with 33 people in hospital, including seven in intensive care.

The City of Red Deer sits at 11 active cases, with 40 recoveries. The County of Stettler remains the hardest hit in the region, with 24 cases, while Starland County has 16 active cases.

Camrose has eight active cases, while Sylvan Lake has four and Wetaskiwin has three.

Lacombe County sits at nine active cases, while the City of Lacombe still has no active cases. Ponoka County has seven active cases, Kneehill County has 11 and Camrose County has four.

“This needs to be a wake-up call. I am very concerned by these numbers. Recently, our active cases have risen sharply,” Hinshaw said.

“There is no zone spared from the increase. Even rural areas, including central Alberta, which has not seen high case numbers so far, now has 33 cases in hospital, seven of whom are in the ICU. We have seen a rise in cases across the province, and as such, precautions need to be taken in all parts of Alberta.”

Hinshaw also shared some concerning numbers about who is being affecting by COVID-19.

One out of every 50 diagnosed cases between the ages of 20 and 39 has needed to be admitted to hospital. Between the ages of 40 and 69, that risk is greater, with one out of 20 going to hospital.

One out of every 10 diagnosed cases between the ages of 70 to 79 has died, and for those over 80, one out of every four cases has died.

“Surviving this virus can still be awful and life changing. There is some emerging evidence of the long-term effects of COVID-19, particularly those who have more severe illness, such as an ICU admission,” she said.

“There can be long-term damage, such as higher risk of diabetes and lung damage that doesn’t go away when the infection ends. Regardless of age, we don’t know what impact COVID-19 will have on your lifelong health. This is not something to be taken lightly.

“The guidance we have put in place is the manual on how to live with COVID-19 for at least the rest of this year, and likely beyond. It is not an optional suggestion that can be disregarded when inconvenient.”

Hinshaw was also adamant that if Albertans start being more diligent with hand washing, mask wearing and social distancing, they can get the virus under control again by early August. She said the government is not considering mandatory mask wearing right now.

“We are a remarkable province and I believe in Albertans,” she said.

“And the power of our collective action. We can pull together and turn this around. If you need motivation to distance, wear a mask or wash your hands, or stay home if you’re sick, remember who you are protecting. We are each other’s best defence. Today, tomorrow and the weeks and months ahead.”

Coronavirus

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

College expects lower enrolment but president remains optimistic

International travel restrictions will have big impact on foreign students

Alberta’s active COVID-19 cases continue to trend downwards

85 new cases Tuesday, active cases sit at 1,004

Overwhelming majority of Red Deer students could be back in classrooms this fall

Preliminary survey results show 94 per cent parental support

Some Red Deer County residents oppose a gravel pit proposed for a flood-prone area

Howell’s Excavation co-owner says the proposal meets or exceeds standards

Workers at Regina linen company contract COVID-19 but facility safe: officials

REGINA — Health officials say 18 employees at a linen facility in… Continue reading

Alberta reports 257 new cases of COVID-19

The Alberta government reported 257 new cases of COVID-19 in its latest… Continue reading

Cast your votes for Best of Red Deer

The Advocate’s Best of Red Deer Readers’ Choice Awards are back. Community… Continue reading

Canadian Leylah Annie Fernandez notches upset in first round of Top Seed Open

Canadian Leylah Annie Fernandez notches upset in first round of Top Seed Open

Healthy ace Scherzer pitches Nats past Mets 2-1 for 1st win

Healthy ace Scherzer pitches Nats past Mets 2-1 for 1st win

Portland beats Orlando 2-1 to claim MLS is Back championship

Portland beats Orlando 2-1 to claim MLS is Back championship

First-round back-to-backs favour NHL teams with 2 top goalies

First-round back-to-backs favour NHL teams with 2 top goalies

NHL pushes game back a day after 4 overtimes in playoff opener

NHL pushes game back a day after 4 overtimes in playoff opener

Lightning outlast Blue Jackets 3-2 in 5 OT thriller

Lightning outlast Blue Jackets 3-2 in 5 OT thriller

Shaw, Blue Jays beat Marlins 5-4 in MLB’s return to Buffalo

Shaw, Blue Jays beat Marlins 5-4 in MLB’s return to Buffalo

Most Read