Alberta Premier Jason Kenney makes his way to the chamber as the Alberta Legislature sits through the weekend to pass a series of emergency bills, in Edmonton, Friday, March 20, 2020. The Edmonton Zone Medical Staff Association is calling on the Government of Alberta to reinstate COVID-19 testing, tracing and isolation requirements to control viral spread. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jason Franson

Edmonton physicians call on Alberta government to reinstate COVID-19 safety measures

Edmonton physicians call on Alberta government to reinstate COVID-19 safety measures

CALGARY — A group of Edmonton doctors is calling on the Alberta government to reinstate COVID-19 testing, tracing and isolation requirements to control viral spread.

Ten physicians from the Edmonton Zone Medical Staff Association have signed an open letter that draws attention to threats posed by the Delta variant and the potential for pediatric and adult intensive care units to become overwhelmed should Alberta continue with its approach.

Close contacts of people who test positive for COVID-19 are no longer being notified by contact tracers, nor are they required to isolate.

Starting Aug. 16, infected individuals will no longer be legally required to isolate either.

The association says Alberta is going against the advice from Health Canada, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the World Health Organization.

The group is asking the province to review existing data and provide sound evidence before weakening COVID-19 control measures.

“We are concerned with the rapid speed of these changes and that you have provided no scientific data to Albertans to justify these unprecedented actions,” says the letter.

“There are repetitive waves of COVID-19 variants moving around the world and we have not yet reached a safe state with a constant low level of virus in our community.”

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Aug. 4, 2021.

The Canadian Press

Coronavirus