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“At this point, we don’t have anything specific beyond those same trends that we are seeing across the province, where social gatherings are a risk factor for large-spread events.”
Discussions are ongoing about potential measures for the Calgary area, Hinshaw said, but no decisions have yet been made. She said action would be done in conjunction with local authorities and epidemiology teams.
Two weeks ago, Hinshaw introduced voluntary public-health measures for the Edmonton area following a precipitous rise in cases in that city. At the time, there were 108.8 active cases per 100,000 Edmontonians; there are currently 82.4 active cases per 100,000 residents in Calgary.
An additional measure was introduced in the Edmonton region Thursday, as Hinshaw announced Alberta Health Services would immediately begin postponing allnon-urgent and some ambulatory care clinic visits.
Just under half of all active COVID-19 cases in Alberta are in the AHS Edmonton zone (1,718), while about 36 per cent are in the Calgary zone (1,260).
Hinshaw cited Thanksgiving celebrations as one possible cause of the current spike in cases across Alberta, but particularly in areas where infection rates were already high before the holiday.
“We definitely have seen an impact from Thanksgiving gatherings and we’re starting to see numbers where people who acquired it at Thanksgiving perhaps passed it on to others, maybe before knowing they were affected,” she said.