Alberta reported the highest daily COVID-19 case total since October and nearly double the previous day's total, as 1,346 new cases were recorded Wednesday.
COVID-19 transmission is exploding as the province witnesses spread of the highly transmissible Omicron variant. Confirmed cases of the new variant grew to 2,131 on Wednesday, up from 1,609 in Tuesday's update.
There is always a delay between confirming a positive COVID-19 case and determining which variant the person has, but Alberta's Chief Medical Officer of Health Dr. Deena Hinshaw said Tuesday the new variant is dominant in Alberta and anyone who tests positive now should assume they have Omicron.
The new cases were detected through 11,516 PCR tests with a positivity rate of 11.85 per cent, higher than the province has seen recently and another sign of the rapid growth in transmission.
Five more COVID-related deaths were added to the province's total, which is now 3,299.
Active cases of COVID-19 grew by more than a thousand from Tuesday's update and there are now 7,065 active cases in the province. Here's how active cases break down by health region:
Calgary zone: 3,887
Edmonton zone: 2,087
Central zone: 454
North zone: 406
South zone: 223
As of the latest update, 326 people are being treated in hospital for COVID, including 65 in intensive care.
COVID-19 vaccinations were noticeably high on Tuesday, the same day the province announced anyone 18 or older could get a third dose shot as long as it had been five months since the person's second dose. There were 42,333 doses administered on Tuesday, 37,408 of which were additional doses (third doses).
As of the latest update, about 72.6 per cent of Albertans are considered fully vaccinated against COVID-19.