COVID-19 Weekly Regional Update
During the Sept. 21 COVID-19 provincial update Dr. Dina Hinshaw, Alberta’s Chief Medical Officer discussed targeted voluntary asymptomatic testing.
Dr. Hinshaw stated, “Alberta is shifting to targeted COVID-19 testing to reduce testing wait times, speed up access to results and support Albertans during influenza season and the winter months.
Any Albertan with symptoms, is a close contact of a confirmed case, or linked to an outbreak will continue to be tested as usual.”
Voluntary asymptomatic testing will continue to be offered for priority groups that are most at risk of spreading COVID-19 to vulnerable or at-risk populations. This includes:
- School teachers and staff
- Residents and staff in congregate settings
- Health-care workers
- Albertans experiencing homelessness
- Travellers who require testing prior to departure
She went on to say, “Voluntary asymptomatic testing is no longer recommended for other Albertans who have no symptoms and no suspected exposure to COVID-19. Any Albertan who has no symptoms but has already booked a test will still be able to get tested.”
During the update she also mentioned the number of confirmed cases in schools throughout the province. “Currently 126 confirmed cases in 81 schools. Of those, 62 schools with 74 total cases are on alert. A school outbreak is declared over when there have been no new confirmed cases in a school for 28 days.”
On Alberta Health’s website there is an interactive map which designates schools as open, watch or enhanced status, consistent with the COVID-19 Relaunch Status Map. There must be an outbreak of at least two confirmed cases in a school for it to be reported on the map. Schools without two confirmed cases are not listed. The outbreak map is updated Monday to Friday, on school days.
As of Sept. 22 there were 16,889 confirmed cases, 1,565 active cases, 15,066 recovered cases in Alberta. Fifty-one people were in hospital and 9 people in ICU. The total number of deaths were 258. A total of 1,229,939 tests have been completed, (14,264 on Sept. 21).
In Vegreville/Minburn County there were 8 confirmed cases, 0 active cases, 8 recovered cases, and 0 deaths. In Two Hills County there were 18 confirmed cases, 0 active cases, 17 recovered cases, and 1 death. In Lamont County there were 9 confirmed cases, 0 active cases, 9 recovered cases, and 0 deaths. In Tofield (Beaver County West) there were 15 confirmed cases, 0 active cases, 15 recovered cases, 0 deaths. In Viking (Beaver County East) there were 74 confirmed cases, 0 active cases, 74 recovered cases, and 0 deaths.