COVID-19 Update Confirms Smoky Lake Under Watch

COVID-19 Update Confirms Smoky Lake Under Watch

Michelle Pinon
News Advertiser

On Sept. 14 Alberta Health Services notified Smoky Lake County that is now listed under a watch under COVID-19 Regional Status as active cases of COVID-19 have now increased to 10. That notice was posted on the county’s website that same day.

A watch status means that the province is monitoring the risk and discussing with local government(s) and other community leaders the possible need for additional health measures and that there are at least 10 active cases and/or more than 50 active cases per 100,000.

In Vegreville/Minburn County there were 8 confirmed cases, 3 active cases, 5 recovered cases, and 0 deaths. In Two Hills County, there were 18 confirmed cases, 5 active cases, 12 recovered cases, and 1 death. In Lamont County, there were 9 confirmed cases, 3 active cases, 6 recovered cases, and 0 deaths. In Tofield (Beaver County East) there were 74 confirmed cases, 0 active cases, 74 recovered cases, and 0 deaths. In Viking (Beaver County West) there were 15 confirmed cases, 0 active cases, 15 recovered cases, and 0 deaths.

Alberta’s Chief Medical Officer of Heath Dr. Deena Hinshaw said has been asked many times about when Alberta will see a second wave of COVID-19 this fall, and how it will impact our schools, workplaces and continuing care facilities.

On Sept. 14 Hinshaw responded by stating, “The answer is that we may well see rises in cases this fall. What this looks like is up to us.

Whether we see a sharp spike in cases, or whether we continue to see ripples where cases rise, level off and then fall, this depends on how dedicated we all are to following the measures in place, and how we collectively respond when cases are rising. Our success in reducing the spread of the virus through community transmission will be determined by the actions of all us. As we head into this fall and winter, our dedication cannot waiver. We are now into fall, with Thanksgiving only a few weeks ahead and, before we know it, winter.

Cold weather will bring many of us into closer contact. The best thing we can do to limit any second wave, to ensure a safe Halloween and to support a healthy school year is to keep community transmission low. Each of us continues to be a shield protecting our family, friends and neighbours.

We can all help prevent school and workplace outbreaks by being extra diligent in the weeks ahead. If we all keep washing our hands, staying home when sick and taking all the other small but crucial measures to prevent COVID-19 from spreading, we can and will come through it together.”

Hinshaw reiterated the general health guidelines which recommend washing hands regularly, keeping a two-metre distance from others, staying home if you’re feeling unwell, and getting tested for the virus if you have any symptoms or have come into close contact with someone who is infectious.