Presumptive COVID-19 cases in Alberta have doubled: province

Mar 10 2020, 3:07 pm

The Province of Alberta has announced seven additional presumptive cases of COVID-19, also known as novel coronavirus, in the province, doubling the previous amount.

A release from the government states that all new cases are currently recovering in isolation, while one of the seven previously announced cases is now in hospital, as that person had a pre-existing chronic condition.

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“While new cases are always concerning, Albertans should know that increases are expected as we work aggressively to limit the virus’s spread,” said Alberta’s Chief Medical Officer Dr. Deena Hinshaw in the release.

“We are all in this together. Every one of us has a role to play in protecting our families, friends and fellow Canadians. The precautionary measures you take now will help shield yourself and others, especially seniors and people with pre-existing medical conditions, from this virus.”

Of the seven new cases, three are in Edmonton while four are in Calgary.

The new Edmonton cases include a man in his 70s and a woman in her 60s who had been travelling together. The third is a woman in her 30s who had been travelling outside of Canada.

The new Calgary cases are two females in their 30s, a female in her 40s, and a man in his 50s.

All seven new cases are travel-related, according to the release. It is believe that those infected had been visiting a number of countries including France, the Netherlands, Egypt, Iran, Taiwan, Germany, Malaysia, Trinidad and Tobago, Panama, the Philippines, and the United States.

One was on the same MS Braemar cruise ship as the previous Alberta case that had been announced on March 9.

“Alberta is well-prepared for this challenge, and our system continues to respond quickly and effectively to every confirmed case,” said Minister of Health Tyler Shandro in the release.

“I want to thank all of our health professionals for their continued dedication. We will ensure that our public health professionals and the health system overall have the resources they need to protect Albertans, now and in the days ahead.”

The past week had seen Canadian organizations and agencies reacting to the virus, with Air Canada suspending all flights to Italy, professional sports teams barring media from locker rooms, and Canada’ Chief Public Health Officer advising Canadians to avoid travel on cruise ships.

However, the risk to Albertans remains low, according to the release.