An­other Covid-re­lated death at care centre

Chief med­i­cal of­fi­cer is­sues re­minder to re­main safe amid eco­nomic re­launch

Calgary Herald - - CITY+REGION - STEPHANIE BABYCH sbabych@post­media.com

An­other COVID-19 death was re­ported at the site of Al­berta’s sin­gle-dead­li­est out­break — a con­tin­u­ing care centre in Cal­gary — as the prov­ince recorded 32 new cases Mon­day.

The death of a woman in her 90s, who was a res­i­dent at the Ex­ten­di­care Hill­crest con­tin­u­ing care centre in north­west Cal­gary, marks the 153rd death of an Al­ber­tan from COVID-19.

The out­break at Ex­ten­di­care Hill­crest re­mains the sin­gle-dead­li­est out­break in Al­berta with 22 recorded deaths of res­i­dents, fol­lowed by Mcken­zie Towne Con­tin­u­ing Care Centre with 20 and In­ter­care Brent­wood with 18. How­ever, the out­breaks at these fa­cil­i­ties have got­ten smaller as more res­i­dents and staff re­cover.

Ex­ten­di­care Hill­crest cur­rently has six ac­tive cases and 65 re­cov­er­ies; In­ter­care Brent­wood has two ac­tive cases and 66 re­cov­er­ies; and, Mcken­zie Towne Con­tin­u­ing Care has no ac­tive cases and a to­tal of 94 re­cov­er­ies, ac­cord­ing to Al­berta Health.

In to­tal, there are 542 ac­tive cases provincewi­de as of Mon­day, which is eight more ac­tive cases than Sun­day.

On Sun­day, the num­ber of ac­tive cases of COVID -19 in the Edmonton zone sur­passed the ac­tive to­tal in the Cal­gary zone, though Cal­gary has con­sis­tently had more ac­tive cases since the first few cases were con­firmed in early March. But on Mon­day, how­ever, the Cal­gary zone again had the most ac­tive cases with 245 while the Edmonton zone had 236.

There are 34 ac­tive cases in the North zone, 21 in the South zone, three in the Cen­tral zone and three are marked as un­known lo­ca­tions.

The 396,300 tests com­pleted by Al­berta Health Ser­vices have de­tected a to­tal of 7,736 cases of COVID-19 in Al­berta. Re­cov­er­ies are now sit­ting at 7,041. There are 32 hos­pi­tal­iza­tions, in­clud­ing six pa­tients re­quir­ing in­ten­sive care.

Dr. Deena Hin­shaw, Al­berta’s chief med­i­cal of­fi­cer of health, posted on Twit­ter in lieu of a press con­fer­ence on Mon­day, to re­mind Al­ber­tans that “dis­tanc­ing and mask­ing (when needed)” are part of the im­por­tant re­turn-to-work strate­gies to keep peo­ple safe as the prov­ince re­opens.

“I chal­lenge each Al­ber­tan to re­mind others of the guid­ance and pro­mote good hy­giene. Dili­gently fol­low­ing the pub­lic health mea­sures means you are be­ing con­sid­er­ate and car­ing — not over-cau­tious,” Hin­shaw posted Mon­day.

As part of the eco­nomic re­launch, the pro­vin­cial govern­ment has dis­trib­uted about 14 mil­lion non-med­i­cal masks to Al­ber­tans, through the drive-thru pro­gram that kicked off two weeks ago on June 8, and an­other six mil­lion through mu­nic­i­pal­i­ties, se­niors or­ga­ni­za­tions, Indige­nous part­ners and places of wor­ship.

In a re­lease Mon­day, Min­is­ter of Health Tyler Shan­dro thanked the pro­vin­cial govern­ment’s part­ners in help­ing them dis­trib­ute the free non-med­i­cal masks to Al­ber­tans through the pro­gram. Mcdonald’s Canada, A&W and Tim Hor­tons drive-thrus across the prov­ince provided min­i­mal-con­tact dis­tri­bu­tion of pack­ages of four masks for each per­son.

“A pro­gram of this scale would not have been pos­si­ble with­out your hard work and com­mu­nity sup­port. We will con­tinue to sup­port Al­ber­tans as we move through stage two of re­launch, and peo­ple con­tinue to get back to work,” Shan­dro said in the re­lease.

The dis­tri­bu­tion of non-med­i­cal masks has been paused at the restau­rant-part­ner lo­ca­tions un­til the next phase of the pro­gram which is sched­uled to start in July, though Al­ber­tans can still re­quest a pack­age of masks by call­ing 211.

An­other 20 mil­lion masks are ex­pected to be dis­trib­uted in July through drive-thrus and other part­ners, ac­cord­ing to the pro­vin­cial govern­ment.

Also Mon­day, YMCA Cal­gary an­nounced its re­open­ing strat­egy, with a plan to fully re­open on July 20.

Cur­rently, Cal­gary’s YMCA lo­ca­tions have launched reg­is­tra­tion for YMCA Sum­mer Mo­ments, a reimag­ined sum­mer pro­gram start­ing July 6 that fits with Al­berta Health’s safety re­quire­ments.

YMCA Cal­gary will also be drop­ping de­tailed re­open­ing in­for­ma­tion and other de­tails on July 6.

Al­though gyms and re­cre­ation cen­tres were given the go-ahead to re­open with re­stric­tions on June 12, YMCA Cal­gary said in a re­lease they are tak­ing their time to en­sure fa­cil­i­ties “meet the high­est stan­dards of health and safety,” to cre­ate an on­line tool to as­sist mem­bers and par­tic­i­pants, and to re­call and re­train staff and vol­un­teers.

Dili­gently fol­low­ing the pub­lic health mea­sures means you are be­ing con­sid­er­ate and car­ing …

AZIN GHAFFARI

Pas­sen­gers wear­ing face masks exit and pre­pare to en­ter the Ctrain on Mon­day.

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