Rural life claimed by COVID; local cases surpasses 100-mark
As local cases of COVID-19 increase, another resident has succumbed to the virus within the past week.
As of Monday, April 5, a resident located in rural Strathcona County died from COVID-19. That brought the local COVID-19 death toll to 36 — 31 deaths reported in Sherwood Park and five in the rural portion of the county.
According to Alberta Health, there were 118 active COVID-19 cases in Strathcona County — 89 in Sherwood Park and 29 in the rural area.
That marks a net increase of 31 active cases since last Monday, March 29.
The site shows there have been 1,839 cases recorded in Sherwood Park since the start of the pandemic and 1,719 of those are listed as recovered, which is an increase of 25 recoveries since Monday, March 29.
In rural Strathcona County, there have been 576 total cases recorded since the start of the pandemic. Six more residents in the rural area recovered within the past week, with recoveries totalling 536.
Even though Strathcona County council allowed the local masking bylaw to expire on March 31, the provincial masking mandate for indoor public spaces continues to be in effect as it supersedes municipal policies.
In nearby Fort Saskatchewan, 12 more active cases of the virus have arisen within the past week.
Overall, there have been 630 since the start of the pandemic and 39 of those are currently active.
There have been 11 more recoveries reported since Monday, March 29 (total 571).
There have been 20 deaths recorded in Fort Saskatchewan linked to COVID-19; none of which have been recorded recently.
Almost 40 per cent of COVID-19 cases in Alberta are variants
Alberta reported 887 new cases of COVID-19 on Monday, after 9,102 tests were completed over the last 24 hours for a positivity rate of 9.7 per cent.
There were 432 new variant cases also reported. Of the 10,582 active COVID-19 cases across the province, 4,145 or 39.2 per cent are variants of concern.
There are 312 people currently hospitalized with COVID-19, an increase of 20 since numbers were last provided on Friday. Of those, 76 are in intensive care units, an increase of 17.
Four more people have died, raising the provincial death toll to 1,998.
In a Monday night tweet, AHS said it will be expanding the COVID-19 vaccine eligibility under Phase 2B to those born in 1973 or earlier, adding 10 years.
In order to prepare for the next wave of eligible Albertans booking online or through HealthLink 811, the online booking tool will be unavailable Tuesday morning between 7 a.m. and 8 a.m. Bookings will resume at 8 a.m.
As well, three additional family members who are eligible to receive their vaccine will be able to book at the same time and at the same clinic.
There are 116,198 Albertans fully immunized.
Following two straight days of approximately 1,100 cases discovered in one day, On Sunday, there were 950 new COVID-19 cases reported with 600 of those confirmed as variants.
Ahead of the long weekend on Thursday, Premier Jason Kenney did not introduce new health measures despite saying the province was entering a new wave of the pandemic. He encouraged people who want to gather to do it outdoors in a physically distanced manner and reiterated that there is a ban on indoor gatherings except for members of the same household or two close contacts for those who live alone.
“Compliance with the measures matters far, far more than the stringency of them,” Kenney said. “We can have a U.K.-style hard lockdown … on paper, but if no one is respecting the rules, it doesn’t matter. The plea here is whatever the policy setting is, take it serious.”