364 new COVID-19 cases reported Thursday in Alberta

Three new voluntary health measures introduced in Edmonton zone

The province announced an increase of 364 new cases of COVID-19 on Thursday.

The Edmonton region was the source of 276 of the new cases, prompting Alberta’s chief medical officer of health to introduce voluntary steps aimed at curbing the spread of the virus in the capital.

“These measures are not being taken lightly, but are necessary to prevent the spread of COVID-19 from continuing to escalate,” Dr. Deena Hinshaw said.

Red Deer Mayor Tara Veer said Thursday that while there is a concern with the numbers in Edmonton, so far, Red Deerians have done good work to mitigate transmission of COVID-19.

“Red Deer has been very fortunate to have relatively low case numbers in the city and also in the central health zone, relative to the rest of the province and the country,” Veer said, adding she’s been in contact with other mayors across the zone about their management of COVID-19.

“I think that’s a credit to Red Deerians and their voluntary compliance with public health protocol and how stringent our citizens are taking public health measures.

“Any time there is a rise in cases in other communities — because as Albertans, we live, work and recreate throughout the province — a rise in cases in any city is a concern because of the possibility of community transmission.”

There are now 2,097 active COVID-19 cases in Alberta.

“I especially caution Albertans against planning large get-togethers this weekend,” said Hinshaw. “Now is not the time to be gathering in large groups, travelling long distances for the holiday or sharing food or utensils outside your cohort.

“Keep your Thanksgiving small, keep it safe and protect one another.”

The new voluntary measures in the Edmonton zone encourage limiting family and private gatherings to no more than 15 people. Hinshaw also recommended masks be worn in all indoor work settings and asked citizens to limit their number of cohorts to no more than three.

“While these voluntary measures are focused on the Edmonton zone, everyone in the province should take note. We must all take precautions to limit the virus’ spread to our friends, family and loved ones.”

Red Deer — which currently has seven active cases of the virus — hasn’t experienced the same rise in case numbers as Edmonton.

Hinshaw noted 36 per cent of the cases in Edmonton were exposed by a close contact. Twenty-six per cent are linked to an outbreak.

“Household or community contacts continue to be a key driver in spreading the virus throughout the city. Social gatherings and family gatherings continue to be a factor in virus spreading events,” she said, adding several Edmonton workplaces have also seen outbreaks.

Although there have been no announced restrictions to businesses yet in Edmonton or the province as a whole, Rick More, CEO of the Red Deer & District Chamber of Commerce, said if the province took steps to close the economy because of rising COVID-19 numbers, it would be devastating to local shops and services.

“A reversal to look at closures would be devastating to a slow, creeping economy,” he said in an email.

“If numbers rise in this area, we just have to be even more prudent in our levels of hygiene. Surely, we have learned by now the consequences.”

The central zone currently sits at 39 active cases of the virus, while the Calgary zone has 604. Edmonton has spiked to 1,251 active cases of COVID-19.

Ponoka County has jumped to 12 active cases and Mountain View County has five active cases. Olds, Wetaskiwin and Sylvan Lake each have one active case of the virus.

Lacombe sits at three active cases, while Red Deer County and Lacombe County each have two active cases.

Coronavirus

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

Just Posted

Alberta has 3,651 active cases of COVID-19. (File photo)
432 new COVID cases sets another record Friday

Central zone holds steady at 126 active cases

"We are looking seriously at the spread and determining what our next steps should be," says Alberta’s chief medical officer of health, Dr. Deena Hinshaw, as the daily number of COVID-19 cases continues to climb.
427 new COVID cases is highest in Alberta ever

Central zone has 126 active cases of COVID-19

COVID-19. (Image courtesy CDC)
Temporary COVID-19 testing sites coming to Wetaskiwin and Ponoka

The Wetaskiwin location will open Oct. 23, 2020 and the Ponoka location will open Oct. 29.

COVID-19. (Image courtesy CDC)
City and County of Wetaskiwin reporting active cases

Both the City of Wetaskiwin and County of Wetaskiwin have active cases.

Alberta chief medical officer of health Dr. Deena Hinshaw updates media on the Covid-19 situation in Edmonton on Friday March 20, 2020. nbsp;Alberta is reporting it's highest daily number of COVID-19 cases, with 364 new infections. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jason Franson
Alberta confirmed 323 COVID-19 cases Tuesday

Central zone active cases at 145

B.C. Liberal leader Andrew Wilkinson, B.C. NDP leader John Horgan and B.C. Greens leader Sonia Furstenau. (Black Press Media)
VIDEO: One day until B.C. voters go to the polls in snap election defined by pandemic

NDP Leader John Horgan’s decision to call an election comes more than a year ahead of schedule and during a pandemic

The Canadian border is pictured at the Peace Arch Canada/USA border crossing in Surrey, B.C. Friday, March 20, 2020. More than 4.6 million people have arrived in Canada since the border closed last March and fewer than one-quarter of them were ordered to quarantine while the rest were deemed “essential” and exempted from quarantining. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Majority of international travellers since March deemed ‘essential’, avoid quarantine

As of Oct. 20, 3.5 million travellers had been deemed essential, and another 1.1 million were considered non-essential

This photo provided by Air Force Reserve shows a sky view of Hurricane Epsilon taken by Air Force Reserve hurricane hunter team over the Atlantic Ocean taken Wednesday, Oct. 21, 2020.   Epsilon’s maximum sustained winds have dropped slightly as it prepares to sideswipe Bermuda on a path over the Atlantic Ocean.  The National Hurricane Center says it should come close enough Thursday, Oct. 22, evening to merit a tropical storm warning for the island.  (Air Force Reserve via AP)
Hurricane Epsilon expected to remain offshore but will push waves at Atlantic Canada

Epsilon is not expected to have any real impact on land

A voter places her absentee ballot in the ballot box, Wednesday, Oct. 7, 2020, at Merrill Auditorium in Portland, Maine. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP/Robert F. Bukaty
American voters living in Canada increasingly being counted in presidential race

The largest number of Canadian-based American voters cast their ballots in New York and California

A composite image of three photographs shows BC NDP Leader John Horgan, left, in Coquitlam, B.C., on Sept. 25, 2020; BC Green Party Leader Sonia Furstenau, centre, in Victoria on Sept. 24, 2020; and BC Liberal Party Leader Andrew Wilkinson Pitt Meadows, B.C., on Sept. 24, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck, Chad Hipolito
British Columbia votes in snap election called during COVID-19 pandemic

NDP Leader John Horgan called the snap election one year before the fixed voting date

Nunavut's provincial flag flies on a flag pole in Ottawa, on Tuesday June 30, 2020. The annual report from Nunavut's representative for children and youth says "complacency and a lack of accountability" in the territory's public service means basic information about young people needing services isn’t tracked. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Nunavut’s young people ‘should be expecting more’ from government services: advocate

‘The majority of information we requested is not tracked or was not provided by departments’

Ryen Williams, 11, with a lost miniature horse at JJ Collett Oct. 23. Photo by Don Williams
UPDATE: Owners found

Father and son found him while out for a walk at JJ Collett

A Le Chateau retail store is shown in Montreal on Wednesday July 13, 2016. Le Chateau Inc. says it is seeking court protection from creditors under the Companies’ Creditors Arrangement Act to allow it to liquidate its assets and wind down its operations.THE CANADIAN PRESS/Ryan Remiorz
Clothing retailer Le Chateau plans to close its doors, files for CCAA protection

Le Chateau said it intends to remain fully operational as it liquidates its 123 stores

U.S. border officers at the Peace Arch crossing arrested two men on California warrants this week. (File photo)
Ottawa predicts system delays, backlogs unless court extends life of refugee pact

Canada and the United States recognize each other as safe places to seek protection

Most Read