Province of Alberta committing $500 million to coronavirus response

Mar 16 2020, 8:50 am

The Province of Alberta is putting some funding back into Alberta Health Services.

A total of $500 million will be injected into the health care system in response to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, which has seen a total of 56 cases as of March 16.

The announcement came on the same day that the province cancelled public schools, child care facilities, and out of school care programs, and on the same day that the City of Calgary called a state of local emergency.

“This is truly an unprecedented public health emergency for Alberta, and our government is committed to bolstering the efforts of our front-line health professionals with the resources they need to continue protecting the province,” said Alberta Premier Jason Kenney in the release.

“Alberta’s public health workers are doing an outstanding job, and we are here to support them with whatever they need.”

In an attempt to reduce strain on Alberta’s health care system, the province has also created an online self-assessment tool that will help anyone who thinks they may have coronavirus determine whether they should be tested.

“We know Alberta’s health system is undertaking massive efforts to respond to this pandemic, and this additional funding from our government will support this work,” said Alberta’s Minister of Health Tyler Shandro in the release.

“I’ve been assured by Alberta Health Services that they will move quickly to put this money to good use in the fight against COVID-19, ensuring the front lines are well equipped with staffing, resources, and supplies — and that Albertans are protected.”

Albertans are encouraged to practice good hygiene and social distancing to reduce the spread of the virus, and anyone who is experiencing symptoms of coronavirus (dry cough, fever, fatigue, difficulty breathing, pneumonia) should contact Health Link 811.

With coronavirus on the rise, Health Canada is reminding individuals who attend events and large gatherings to monitor their health for signs and symptoms of COVID-19. And if you’re not feeling well, they recommend staying home at this time. Also, due to unexpected cancellations, please check the event you plan to attend is still taking place. Keep up with COVID-19 news here.