COVID-19 Update: 1,495 new cases, seven deaths | Restrictions to ease on continuing care centres | Vaccines coming for meat-packing plants

Follow this page for the latest updates and breaking news on coronavirus.

Article content

With news on COVID-19 happening rapidly, we’ve created this page to bring you our latest stories and information on the outbreak in and around Calgary.


What’s happening now

  • Alberta reported Monday 1,495 new cases of COVID-19 on 14,848 tests and seven additional deaths. There were 1,542 new variant cases identified.
  • Restrictions will be easing on continuing care centres in the province as of May 10. Restrictions on indoor and outdoor social visits will be relaxed and the province will allow up to four people designated as support people, an increase of two.
  • Those born in 2006-2009 with underlying health conditions will be eligible to receive a Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine starting Tuesday, Health Minister Tyler Shandro announced.
  • Businesses and organizations will now be able to conduct their own rapid testing programs without the cost of using a health-care provider, Alberta Health announced today.
  • The federal government says it expects Canada to receive around 1.9 million doses of COVID-19 vaccine this week, including its very first shipment of single-dose shots from Johnson & Johnson.
  • Alberta is heading in the same direction as Ontario and stressed hospitals have already moved critical COVID-19 patients into emergency surge areas, warns an Edmonton doctor.
  • Calgary ER physician Dr. Joe Vipond says he expects ICU admissions to go higher than they did in the second wave.
  • Some people looking to book COVID-19 tests are finding they need to wait four or more days for an available appointment.
  • Albertans in their thirties won’t become eligible for AstraZeneca’s COVID-19 vaccine just yet despite a new recommendation from a national panel because of supply issues, Shandro said Friday.
  • Albertans could face fines if they cross into B.C. as the province restricts non-essential travel between its three regional zones to stifle the spread of COVID-19.
  • The federal government is suspending incoming passenger flights from India and Pakistan for the next month as cases of COVID-19 surge in both countries.

Advertisement

Story continues below

This advertisement has not loaded yet, but your article continues below.

Article content


My COVID Story: How have you been impacted by coronavirus?

Postmedia is looking to speak with people who may have been impacted by COVID-19 here in Alberta.  Have you undergone a travel-related quarantine? Have you received your vaccine, and if so did you feel any side effects? Have you changed your life for the better because of the pandemic? Send us an email at reply@calgaryherald.com to tell us your experience, or send us a message via this form.

Read our ongoing coverage of personal stories arising from the pandemic.



U.K. COVID-19 passports could be in place by June

A syringe and a vial labelled “coronavirus disease (COVID-19) vaccine” are placed on a passport in this photo taken April 27, 2021.
A syringe and a vial labelled “coronavirus disease (COVID-19) vaccine” are placed on a passport in this photo taken April 27, 2021. Photo by Dado Ruvic /Reuters

COVID-19 passports could be in place to allow Britons to travel to the United States, France, Italy and Germany by June 28, under plans being considered by ministers.

Grant Shapps, the Transport Secretary, has called a meeting of his G7 counterparts at the forthcoming summit in Cornwall, England, on June 11-13 to create a system of COVID passports that could allow vaccinated travellers free entry into countries around the world.

He wants to establish agreed international standards whereby a “green” list country could accept digital proof of vaccination, a negative test or immunity as a condition of entry.

Read more.


Albertans with underlying health conditions aged 12-15 now eligible for the vaccine

Advertisement

Story continues below

This advertisement has not loaded yet, but your article continues below.

Article content

Young Albertans born between 2006 and 2009 who have underlying health conditions are eligible for the Pfizer vaccine starting today.

AHS says people who have illnesses on the qualifying list can seek a note from their doctor to get the vaccine.


Medical supplies begin to reach India as COVID-19 deaths near 200,000

Workers sort oxygen cylinders used for COVID-19 patients in Jawaharlal Nehru Hospital in Ajmer on April 22, 2021.
Workers sort oxygen cylinders used for COVID-19 patients in Jawaharlal Nehru Hospital in Ajmer on April 22, 2021. Photo by HIMANSHU SHARMA/AFP via Getty Images

Vital medical supplies began to reach India on Tuesday as hospitals starved of life-saving oxygen and beds turned away coronavirus patients, and a surge in infections pushed the death toll towards 200,000.

A shipment from Britain, including 100 ventilators and 95 oxygen concentrators, arrived in the capital, New Delhi, though a spokesman for Prime Minister Boris Johnson said Britain had no surplus COVID-19 vaccine doses to spare.

France is this week sending eight large oxygen generating plants and Ireland, Germany and Australia are sending oxygen concentrators and ventilators, an Indian foreign ministry official said, underlining the crucial need of oxygen.

Read more.


The ‘sickest’ COVID patient in Calgary: How I survived, so far, the ravages of a COVID-19 variant

Russ Ullyot, former editor of the Bow Valley Crag and Canyon is in isolation at the Foothills hospital in Calgary battling COVID-19.
Russ Ullyot, former editor of the Bow Valley Crag and Canyon is in isolation at the Foothills hospital in Calgary battling COVID-19. Photo by Photo submitted by the Ullyot family

Russ Ullyot writes:

I was living a life that I thought would keep me safe from COVID-19. My routine included going to work, getting gas and shopping for groceries. My extended family included myself, my daughter and son-in-law and their two children. I had two brand new granddaughters in 2020, but I still have not met them to this day. I did not go out; I did not hang out indoors or outdoors outside of my family; and, we took care of ourselves . . . Yet, I STILL got it. How, I will never know, but it has changed my life.

Advertisement

Story continues below

This advertisement has not loaded yet, but your article continues below.

Article content

Read more.


Monday

‘At a critical point’: Calgary a ground zero in Canada’s COVID-19 crisis

A man stands next to a COVID-19 restrictions sign in Calgary on Tuesday, April 6, 2021. COVID-19 case numbers have continued to rise.
A man stands next to a COVID-19 restrictions sign in Calgary on Tuesday, April 6, 2021. COVID-19 case numbers have continued to rise. Photo by Dre Kwong/Postmedia

Calgary’s an urban ground zero in the country’s battle with COVID-19 and its struggle will only get worse, the city’s emergency management chief said Monday.

In an update to city council, Sue Henry said the city’s at a crucial juncture with extremely high case and hospitalization numbers.

“Calgary’s at a critical point,” said Henry, chief of the Calgary Emergency Management Agency.

“It’s obvious we’re fully entrenched in the third wave and our case counts continue to rise … active cases are higher than at any point since the pandemic began.”

Read more.


Advertisement

Story continues below

This advertisement has not loaded yet, but your article continues below.

Article content

Advertisement

Story continues below

This advertisement has not loaded yet, but your article continues below.

Article content


Monday

With vaccine success, COVID-19 restrictions to ease in long-term care homes

Premier Jason Kenney and Health Minister Tyler Shandro take part in a press conference in Edmonton on Thursday, March 18, 2021.
Premier Jason Kenney and Health Minister Tyler Shandro take part in a press conference in Edmonton on Thursday, March 18, 2021. Photo by David Bloom /Postmedia

Following a year of tight restrictions, visitation rules will be eased next month in the province’s long-term care centres, Premier Jason Kenney said Monday.

As of May 10, residents will be allowed visits by up to four family members and designated supporters, up from the current two.

And outdoor visitation can number as many as 10 people, double what’s now allowed, though masking and other health protocols must still be followed.

And that easing of restrictions must be approved by facility residents.

But pleas from residents’ loved ones and the proven impacts of vaccinations have led the government to relax restrictions in settings where 61 per cent of Alberta’s COVID-19 fatalities have occurred, said Kenney.

Read more.


Monday

AHS looks to address delays as requests for tests ‘double’ in Calgary: Hinshaw

Advertisement

Story continues below

This advertisement has not loaded yet, but your article continues below.

Article content


Monday

1,495 new cases, seven deaths; restrictions on continuing care centres to ease on May 10

Premier Jason Kenney and Health Minister Tyler Shandro provided a COVID-19 update Monday afternoon.

Advertisement

Story continues below

This advertisement has not loaded yet, but your article continues below.

Article content

Advertisement

Story continues below

This advertisement has not loaded yet, but your article continues below.

Article content

Advertisement

Story continues below

This advertisement has not loaded yet, but your article continues below.

Article content

Advertisement

Story continues below

This advertisement has not loaded yet, but your article continues below.

Article content

Advertisement

Story continues below

This advertisement has not loaded yet, but your article continues below.

Article content

The latest numbers for Alberta:

  • 1,495 new cases on 14,848 tests
  • 616 in hospital; 145 in ICUs
  • Seven deaths; 2,074 total
  • 1,542 new variant cases identified; variants are 64% of active cases
  • 20,610 active cases; 160,617 recovered

Watch the full livestream below.

We apologize, but this video has failed to load.

Advertisement

Story continues below

This advertisement has not loaded yet, but your article continues below.

Article content


Monday

Notley calls for Alberta to offer ten days of paid work leave to stop workplace spread of COVID-19

Alberta NDP Leader Rachel Notley (right) and NDP Labour Critic Christina Gray.
Alberta NDP Leader Rachel Notley (right) and NDP Labour Critic Christina Gray. Photo by Larry Wong /POSTMEDIA NETWORK

The opposition NDP is calling for the Alberta government to provide ten days of paid leave for isolating workers to curb workplace spread of COVID-19.

Leader Rachel Notley said Monday the Alberta government should cover employers sending the wage support directly to workers as part of their paycheques, leaving the details of how the province might be reimbursed through the federal government’s recovery sickness benefit until later.

Read more.


Monday

Individual at Saturday ‘Freedom Rally’ in Medicine Hat tests positive: AHS

Advertisement

Story continues below

This advertisement has not loaded yet, but your article continues below.

Article content

Advertisement

Story continues below

This advertisement has not loaded yet, but your article continues below.

Article content


Monday

Rapid testing in Alberta no longer requires health-care provider

Nursing student Shauna Mondin gives COVID-19 rapid tests at Bow View Manor in Calgary on March 1, 2021.
Nursing student Shauna Mondin gives COVID-19 rapid tests at Bow View Manor in Calgary on March 1, 2021. Photo by Leah Hennel/AHS

Businesses and organizations will now be able to conduct their own rapid testing programs without the cost of using a health-care provider, Alberta Health announced today.

“This means organizations will be able to participate in the rapid testing program completely independently and without the burden of finding and paying for a health-care provider,” said the statement. “This change will also free up health-care professional capacity at a time when it is most needed.”

Ken Kolby, president of the Alberta Chambers of Commerce, welcomed the change and said it would “remove a cost barrier” to small- and medium-sized businesses wishing to participate in rapid testing.

The statement said the province is developing a rapid testing program specifically for chamber of commerce members.

Launched in March, Alberta’s rapid testing program allows any organization to apply for free COVID-19 rapid testing kits to be used in a screening program. More than 1.8 million rapid tests have been deployed across Alberta.

To be eligible, employers and organizations must have a screening program that includes the use of personal protective equipment and a process for reporting results.

Priority is given to businesses and organizations involved with vulnerable populations, high-risk settings and workplaces, essential and front-line services, critical industry, and sectors that support the reopening of economic and social activity.

Comments

Postmedia is committed to maintaining a lively but civil forum for discussion and encourage all readers to share their views on our articles. Comments may take up to an hour for moderation before appearing on the site. We ask you to keep your comments relevant and respectful. We have enabled email notifications—you will now receive an email if you receive a reply to your comment, there is an update to a comment thread you follow or if a user you follow comments. Visit our Community Guidelines for more information and details on how to adjust your email settings.

View Source