Alberta’s chief medical officer of health, Dr. Deena Hinshaw, said growing COVID-19 case numbers continue to be a concern in the province. (Chris Schwarz/Government of Alberta)

Alberta announces 1,077 new COVID-19 cases Thursday

There are currently 14,052 active cases in the province

Alberta’s chief medical officer of health says recently leaked recordings that hint at tension regarding the province’s COVID-19 response were “taken out of context.”

Dr. Deena Hinshaw said she was “profoundly disappointed” internal conversations were shared. She called it a violation of the public service oath and code of conduct.

“This is a personal betrayal and betrayal of the trust that our hardworking team has placed in each other,” Hinshaw said during a live COVID-19 update Thursday afternoon.

“The comments, as reported, are taken out of context, separated from the many other discussions that would have occurred in the days before and after, as part of ongoing discussions to ensure that my advice to the premier and the minister of health is grounded in evidence and considers every facet of potential discussions with elected leaders.”

Hinshaw said her role is to provide the best advice to elected officials to protect the health of Albertans.

“There are no risk-free options with COVID-19. This pandemic has challenged us all and required a wide range of complex decisions, all of which have strengths and weaknesses,” she said.

“I do not dictate every detail of each policy decision, and I should not. I was not elected by Albertans. The final decisions are up to elected officials who were chosen by Albertans. This is how democracy works.”

The government confirmed 1,077 new COVID-19 cases Thursday afternoon.

Hinshaw revealed the latest statistics during the government’s daily update.

This brings the province’s active cases total to 14,052. Alberta’s COVID-19 death toll is now 510.

There are 158 active cases in Red Deer and 53 in Red Deer County.

Sylvan Lake has 41 active cases, Lacombe County has 31, Lacombe has 23, Olds has 17, Clearwater County has 14, Mountain View County has 11 and Stettler has two.

Collectively, Ponoka County and Wetaskiwin County have 317 active cases.

There are 947 active cases in Alberta Health Services’ central zone. Edmonton has the most active cases of any zone with 6,444, while Calgary has 5,126, the north zone has 789, the south zone has 664 and 82 are within an unknown location.

There are currently active alerts or outbreaks at 359 Alberta schools, which is about 15 per cent of all schools in the province. These schools have a combined 1,288 active cases.

Provincially, 383 people are in hospital due to COVID-19 – 84 of those individuals have been admitted into an intensive care unit.

Twenty people have been hospitalized in the central zone – five of those individuals are in intensive care.

Health Minister Tyler Shandro announced the province will soon begin piloting point-of-care rapid testing for COVID-19.

AHS and Alberta Precision Laboratories have been working to evaluate the effectiveness of the Abbott IDNow and PanBio COVID-19 testing kits, which have been approved by Health Canada and provided to provinces and territories by the federal government.

More than 100,000 tests are available for distribution to targeted sites to help reduce the spread of COVID-19 and protect Albertans.

In the coming weeks, these two point-of-care rapid testing systems will be rolled out in clinical pilots at several sites throughout the province.

The tests “will be used on patients who are within the first seven days of expressing symptoms,” said Shandro.

“This will allow us to quickly identify and notify positive cases within hours, reducing the need for patient samples to be transported to centralized public laboratories for processing.”

The PanBio rapid antigen tests will be used at one assessment centre in Calgary and one assessment centre in Edmonton.

The IDNow tests will begin to be used at the COVID-19 assessment centres in Slave Lake and St. Paul and at the hospital lab in Bonnyville.



Send your news tips

Like us on Facebook and Follow us on Twitter

Coronavirus

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

Just Posted

Alberta Chief Medical Officer of Health Dr. Deena Hinshaw reported an additional 456 COVID-19 cases over the past 24 hours. (photography by Chris Schwarz/Government of Alberta)
Five new COVID-19 deaths in Central zone, two in Red Deer

Province reports 456 new cases of COVID-19

county
County of Stettler council meeting highlights for Jan. 13th

County council chambers will be getting some audio-visual upgrades

It was a special treat day at Points West Living in Stettler as the local Dairy Queen donated mini blizzard treats for residents and staff to enjoy. It was a way to celebrate the end of a recent COVID-19 outbreak at the facility. photo submitted
It was a special treat day at Stettler’s Points West Living recently

Dairy Queen provided 150 mini-blizzards for staff and residents

book
Stettler Learning Centre staff broaden services in challenging times

“We are creative, we are innovative and we are resilient. We are flexible and we want to adapt.”

ski
Valley Ski Club Slope Stabilization Project is awarded CFEP Grant

With forecasts predicting continued mild weather, the board made the decision not to proceed with the current season

A scene from “Canada and the Gulf War: In their own words,” a video by The Memory Project, a program of Historica Canada, is shown in this undated illustration. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO - Historica Canada
New video marks Canada’s contributions to first Gulf War on 30th anniversary

Veterans Affairs Canada says around 4,500 Canadian military personnel served during the war

In this March 28, 2017, file photo, a dump truck hauls coal at Contura Energy’s Eagle Butte Mine near Gillette, Wyo. Public opposition to the Alberta government’s plans to expand coal mining in the Rocky Mountains appears to be growing. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP/Mead Gruver, File
Alberta cancels coal leases, pauses future sales, as opposition increases

New Democrat environment critic Marlin Schmidt welcomed the suspension

File photo
Wetaskiwin Crime Reduction Unit recovers valuable stolen property

Property valued at over $50,000 recovered by Wetaskiwin Crime Reduction Unit.

In this March 28, 2017, file photo, a dump truck hauls coal at Contura Energy’s Eagle Butte Mine near Gillette, Wyo. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP/Mead Gruver, File)
First Nations seek to intervene in court challenge of coal policy removal

Bearspaw, Ermineskin and Whitefish First Nations are among those looking to intervene

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau provides an update on the COVID-19 pandemic from Rideau Cottage in Ottawa on Tuesday, Jan. 11, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau provides an update on the COVID-19 pandemic from Rideau Cottage in Ottawa on Tuesday, Jan. 11, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Trudeau vows to keep up the fight to sway U.S. on merits of Keystone XL pipeline

Canada’s pitch to the Biden team has framed Keystone XL as a more environmentally friendly project than original

Central Alberta’s Catherine Hayreceived a letter from the Government of Canada recently stating she had to repay the government. Photo submitted
Central Albertan asked to repay CERB amount

Catherine Hay says she received a letter in November saying she had to completely repay the benefit

A health-care worker prepares a dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine at a UHN COVID-19 vaccine clinic in Toronto on Thursday, January 7, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
No Pfizer vaccines arriving in Canada next week; feds still expect 4M doses by end of March

More cases of U.K. variant, South African variant found in Canada

Health-care workers wait in line at a UHN COVID-19 vaccine clinic in Toronto on Thursday, January 7, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
Canadians who have had COVID-19 should still get the vaccine, experts say

Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna vaccines were found to have a 95 per cent efficacy

An empty Peel and Sainte-Catherine street is shown in Montreal, Saturday, Jan. 9, 2021, as the COVID-19 pandemic continues in Canada and around the world. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Graham Hughes
Poll finds strong support for COVID-19 curfews despite doubts about effectiveness

The poll suggests 59 per cent remain somewhat or very afraid of contracting COVID-19

Most Read