Alberta reports 267 new COVID-19 cases, 11 more deaths

Alberta reported 267 new cases of COVID-19 on Tuesday and 11 more deaths from the illness.

Across the province there were 4,516 active cases, with 326 patients being treated in hospitals, including 51 in ICU beds.

Laboratories completed about 6,300 tests over the past 24 hours, with a positivity rate of about 4.4 per cent.

A total of 1,853 people have now died from the illness in Alberta since the pandemic began last March.

The regional breakdown of active cases was:

  • Calgary zone: 1,612
  • Edmonton zone:  930
  • North zone: 875
  • Central zone: 745
  • South zone: 350
  • Unknown: four

Dr. Deena Hinshaw, the province’s chief medical officer of health, provided her latest update at a news conference on Tuesday.

Hinshaw warned on Monday that reproduction rates are increasing and said public health officials are watching to see if case numbers are headed in the wrong direction.

“Our cases are starting to plateau instead of continuing to drop,” Hinshaw said at a news conference Monday.

“We are seeing steady numbers of new variant cases. Our vaccination campaign needs several more months to reach the majority of our population.” 

The provincewide R-value, or reproductive number, over the past week was 1.03, up from 0.85 the week before. When the reproduction number is greater than one, case numbers are rising. 

Alberta is reopening its economy in stages but will only proceed if case numbers are moving in the right direction.

Hinshaw said provincial health officials will wait until at least March 1 before making a decision on further re-openings. 

“We must be extra cautious,” Hinshaw said. “If given the chance, this virus will spread widely and we risk losing the gains that we have made together.”

On Monday, the province reported 273 new cases of COVID-19. There were 4,675 active cases in the province, with 324 patients being treated for the illness in hospitals, including 53 in intensive care. 

As of Monday, 179,000 doses of the COVID-19 vaccine had been administered, and 69,000 Albertans had been fully immunized.

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