Alberta investing in new equipment to double testing capacity

Alberta provides daily update

Alberta’s recovered case numbers make up more than half of province’s confirmed cases.

The province confirmed 57 COVID-19 cases Tuesday, bringing the total at 5,893. Alberta’s recovered case number is at 3,219 as of Tuesday.

Officials confirmed two COVID-19 deaths Tuesday. The total number of deaths in the province is at 106.

Central zone’s death number remains at one.

Central zone case numbers remain the same as Monday: 89.

The City of Red Deer remains at 36 cases: five active, 31 recovered.

Red Deer County has 13 cases: two active, 11 recovered.

The City of Lacombe has two recovered cases.

Lacombe County has three recovered cases, while Ponoka County has two recovered cases.

Clearwater County has three cases: one active and two recovered.

Health Minister Tyler Shandro announced a $4.5-million investment in new virus detecting equipment. The new technology will double COVID-19 testing capacity from 7,000 to 16,000 per day by June, said Shandro.

“That’s more than double our capacity,” said Shandro.

The funding includes a $1.7-million donation by Calgary Health Trust, with Alberta Health Services and the government of Alberta making up the balance.

Government is also expanding the number of health care practitioners who are able to assist in contact tracing. With this expansion other professionals including chiropractors, paramedics, respiratory therapists, physiotherapists, pharmacists and dental hygienists will be able to take on this role after they complete training.

“There’s a high demand of contact tracing and the need has exceeded AHS’s ability to recruit to do this work,” said Shandro.

The bulk of the cases remains in Calgary zone at 3,957 with 72 deaths. South zone is at 1,094 cases with six deaths followed by Edmonton zone at 502 cases and 12 deaths. North zone has 221 cases with 15 deaths.

There are 622 COVID-19 outbreak cases in continuing care facilities across the province, said Dr. Deena Hinshaw, chief medical officer. The government website shows a list of the facilities in Alberta with the outbreaks and does not have any central zone facilities.

Locations of outbreaks in acute care and continuing care facilities are reported publicly when there are two or more cases, indicating that a transmission within the facility has occurred. Outbreaks at other facilities or in the community are reported publicly when there are five or more cases.

Hinshaw encouraged Albertans to take care of their mental health, as well as check in with their loved ones.

“We often ask people struggling to reach out to their families and friends, but reaching out can sometimes feel like one of the hardest things to do,” she said.

“Instead I challenge all of us today to try to connect proactively with our loved ones and ask how they’re feeling, instead of waiting for them to reach out. Thank the people in your circle who uplift you, and who improve your mental health being and ask how you can be that person for someone else,” adding anxiety, depression and other mental disorders are likely to become widespread amid the pandemic.



mamta.lulla@reddeeradvocate.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

centralalbertaCityof Red DeerCoronavirus

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

Just Posted

Young Canadians, hospitality workers bear the brunt of mental strain in 2020: report

A study by Morneau Shepell points to economic uncertainty in the pandemic as the cause for angst

134 new cases of COVID-19 on Friday

First day over 100 cases since July 31

Much to explore at the Big Valley Historical Society Museum

Plenty of history packed into a diverse and extensive collection

1 in 7 Albertans have been tested for COVID-19

56 additional cases Thursday, 1,107 active cases remain in the province

Explore Alberta during ‘Open Farm Days’

Since 2013, Open Farm Days has seen almost 125,000 person visits

Protestors for Indigenous Lives Matter gather in Wetaskiwin

Protestors gathered along 56 St Wetaskiwin, Alta. August 4, 2020 for Indigenous Lives Matter.

Collapse of Nunavut ice shelf ‘like losing a good friend:’ glaciologist

The ice shelf on the northwestern edge of Ellesmere Island has shrunk 43 per cent

13-year-old charged in death of boy, 10 in Maskwacis

The RCMP Major Crimes Unit have laid a manslaughter charge against a 13-year-old boy from Maskwacis.

‘Caught up in the frenzy:’ Oilers 50/50 draw breaking ticket sale records

Previous record was held by Toronto Raptors fans when a 50/50 raffle reached $2 million

Alberta jury trials to resume next month at offsite locations due to COVID-19

About 12 locations across Alberta may host the trials in halls, hotels and community centres

Alberta school curriculum to focus on basics, keep out political bias: minister

NDP education critic says the kindergarten to Grade 4 changes should have been implemented a year ago

Statistics Canada says country gained 419,000 jobs in July

National unemployment rate was 10.9 per cent in July, down from the 12.3 per cent recorded in June

Canada plans $3.6 billion in retaliatory tariffs on U.S. in aluminium dispute

The new Canada-United States-Mexico Agreement that replaced NAFTA went into force on July 1

Walmart to make face masks mandatory for customers across Canada

Requirement goes into effect on Wednesday, Aug. 12 across Canada

Most Read