Alberta discovered 362 new COVID-19 cases in the last 24 hours, a lower number than recent days that may be explained by a smaller number of tests processed.
The province’s test positivity rate hovered at 5% as approximately 7,200 tests were completed.
Another 409 historical cases were also added to Alberta’s total on Monday. These cases were discovered through point-of-care testing between December 7 and January 13, but due to a technical error they weren’t added to the province’s total count.
The patients still learned their results and self-isolated appropriately, Chief Medical Officer of Health Dr. Deena Hinshaw said at her news briefing.
Another 25 people died of COVID-19 in the past day, bringing Alberta’s death toll to 7,574.
“They loved and were loved, and will be missed,” Hinshaw said.
The people who died ranged from 41 to 100 years old.
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Right now there are 637 people in Alberta’s hospitals with COVID-19, including 113 in the ICU.
Although hospitalizations are slowly falling, the number is not yet low enough for Hinshaw to consider relaxing restrictions.
She told Albertans she would open up the province further as soon as it’s safe to do so.
“Until hospitalizations come down we need to keep the current measures in place,” she said.
The province also announced its first case of the UK variant of COVID-19 in a person with no known travel history, suggesting the more transmissible strain is already circulating in the community.