65% of eligible Albertans fully vaccinated against COVID-19, but active cases rising

On Friday, Alberta Health reported 187 new cases of COVID-19 out of about 8,285 tests.

The province’s positivity rate sat at 2.41 per cent.

As of Friday, there were 1,655 active cases across the province, up from 1,520 on Thursday and 1,334 on Wednesday.

There were 90 people in hospital with COVID-19 Friday, including 19 in ICU.

Three additional deaths were reported.

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The province announced that 65 per cent of Albertans 12 and older have received both doses of vaccine, which the government pointed out was a higher percentage than the United States, France and Germany.

Click to play video: '64% of Albertans fully immunized; Hinshaw says 2 COVID-19 vaccine doses critical as Delta variant spreads' 64% of Albertans fully immunized; Hinshaw says 2 COVID-19 vaccine doses critical as Delta variant spreads

64% of Albertans fully immunized; Hinshaw says 2 COVID-19 vaccine doses critical as Delta variant spreads

“Thank you to all Albertans who have taken the step to get fully protected with two doses of vaccine,” Alberta’s chief medical officer of health, Dr. Deena Hinshaw, said. “Getting vaccinated doesn’t just protect your health but also the health of your family, friends and neighbours.”

When it comes to eligible Albertans with one dose, 75.8 per cent have received one shot.

Read more: Albertans protest ending mandatory COVID-19 isolation, masking and testing changes

“Vaccines are the most effective way to get past the pandemic,” Premier Jason Kenney said. “They’re safe and highly effective.

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“This is another important milestone, but we will keep pushing for more and more Albertans to get the vaccine. If you haven’t gotten both doses, now is the time.”

Bookings for first and second doses are available provincewide. Albertans can book appointments through AHS online, by calling 811 or through participating pharmacies. First-dose walk-in clinics are available at multiple locations.

Click to play video: 'Albertans in their 20s, 30s urged to get their COVID-19 vaccine' Albertans in their 20s, 30s urged to get their COVID-19 vaccine

Albertans in their 20s, 30s urged to get their COVID-19 vaccine

On Friday, Alberta Health confirmed the number of COVID-19 cases acquired at the Calgary Stampede currently sits at 113.

“There are 313 disease incidents or cases that attended the Stampede during their incubation period. Many did other activities during their incubation period and this number would not translate to cases acquired at the event,” a spokesperson told Global News.

“The Calgary Stampede so far does not appear to have been a significant driver of COVID-19 cases in the province.”

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Read more: Alberta taking ‘risky gamble’ by ending COVID isolation: Canadian Paediatric Society

On Wednesday, Alberta Health announced that effective July 29, close contacts will no longer be notified of exposure by contact tracers nor will they be legally required to isolate — although it is still recommended.

Further measures will be eliminated Aug. 16 include people who test positive for COVID-19 will not be mandated to isolate at that time, but it is still strongly recommended. Isolation hotels will also close as quarantine supports end.

Read more: Alberta to adjust COVID-19 masking, isolation, testing rules over next month

Also on Aug. 16, provincial mandatory masking orders will be lifted. Some masking in acute care or continuing care facilities may still be required.

Effective Aug. 31, COVID-19 testing will no longer be available through assessment centres. It will be available in primary care settings including doctors’ offices or in acute care and hospital settings.

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