EDMONTON — Alberta's top doctor says she recognizes measures to contain the spread of COVID-19 in schools are a big inconvenience to families.
Dr. Deena Hinshaw says if a student goes to school while infectious, all their classmates must typically stay home for 14 days.
Hinshaw says gathering more information about who is most at risk of contracting the novel coronavirus at school will help the government take a more targeted approach in the future.
She says there are 42 cases linked to 35 schools, where someone was in the building while infectious.
There are six schools with two or more infections — four in Calgary, one in Edmonton and one in Lethbridge — but there's no indication the virus spread within those institutions.
Alberta added 418 new COVID-19 cases from Friday to Sunday.
On Monday, the province reported 1,538 active cases, 37 people in hospital and seven in intensive care.
There was one additional death over the weekend, bringing that total to 254.
Nearly 19,000 tests were completed on Saturday, but Hinshaw said not to expect numbers that high on a daily basis.
Hinshaw said the daily numbers are "higher than what would be ideal," but the health-care system is able to manage the caseload.
She said there's no particular threshold that would trigger tougher public health measures.
"We need to look at not just the number of cases, but where the cases are being spread, who is impacted by the cases," she said.
"As long as we're able to maintain our case numbers at a relatively steady rate — keeping around that 100 cases per day, ideally slightly lower — we're going to be able to manage this and be able to balance making sure that we have minimal impact on the other issues that people are dealing with."
This report by The Canadian Press was first published on Sept. 14, 2020.
The Canadian Press