What you need to know about COVID-19 in Alberta on Monday, March 23

What you need to know about COVID-19 in Alberta on Monday, March 23

Get updates for Tuesday, March 24 here.

The latest:

  • There are 42 new confirmed cases in Alberta as of Monday afternoon, bringing the total to 301. Of the new cases, 24 may be due to community transmission. There are 18 people in hospital, seven of then are in the ICU.
  • Red Deer has moved quickly to open a new homeless shelter to help maintain social distance for clients. 

What you need to know today in Alberta:

The Calgary zone continues to lead the province in confirmed cases.There are 188 cases in that zone, which stretches out to Banff and the B.C. border. 

There are 68 cases in the Edmonton zone. Eleven of 47 health-care workers who attended a bonspiel in Edmonton from March 11 to 14 have now tested positive for COVID-19. All are self-isolating, and work is being done on public health tracing for those individuals, Hinshaw said. 

A total of 29,757 COVID-19 tests have been done in the province, and one per cent of those tests (301) were positive. 

In order to help reduce that spread, the province and municipalities are looking at ways to prevent an outbreak amidst the homeless population. Calgary is starting to house some in hotels, while Red Deer moved quickly to approve zoning for a new shelter space. 

Jason Kenney also announced new measures to help soften the blow of the pandemic on businesses and individuals, freezing the provincial share of education property taxes at last year's levels, deferring the education portion of property taxes for businesses and deferring WCB payments for employers. 

He also warned those returning to Canada from other countries to go straight home once they arrive

WATCH | How one person can spread COVID-19 to others:

The province is also shifting its testing protocol. Testing will be prioritized for people who are showing symptoms and fall among any of these groups:

  • People hospitalized with respiratory illness.
  • Residents of continuing care or similar facility.
  • People who returned from travelling abroad between March 8 and March 12 (before self-isolation protocols were in place).
  • Health-care workers with respiratory symptoms.

What you need to know today in Canada:

Canada's health minister, Patty Hajdu, said the government will consider all options to enforce self-isolation for travellers returning home, including the possibility of fines and charges.

That tone was repeated on Monday morning by Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, who warned there could be stiff enforcement if people don't heed public health directives

He also announced a $5-billion credit program for farmers and $192 million in new funding for the development and production of vaccines to stop the spread of COVID-19.

WATCH | Why soap is better than gloves as protection from COVID-19:

Canada had 2,091 confirmed and presumptive cases of COVID-19 as of 4:01 p.m. MT Monday, according to CBC's live COVID-19 case tracker. Here's a look at the number of cases — including deaths and recoveries — by province:

  • British Columbia: 472 confirmed cases, including 13 deaths.
  • Ontario: 503 confirmed cases, including six deaths.
  • Alberta: 301 confirmed cases, including one death.
  • Quebec: 628 confirmed cases, including four deaths.
  • Saskatchewan: 66 confirmed cases.
  • Manitoba: 20 confirmed cases.
  • New Brunswick: 17 confirmed cases.
  • Nova Scotia: 41 confirmed cases.
  • Prince Edward Island: Three confirmed cases.
  • Newfoundland and Labrador: 24 confirmed cases.
  • Northwest Territories: One confirmed case.
  • Yukon: Two confirmed cases.

Self-assessment:

Alberta Health Services has an online self-assessment tool that you can use to determine if you have symptoms of COVID-19.

Tests will be given to individuals who have developed symptoms within 14 days of returning from travel outside Canada, or who have had contact with someone diagnosed with the illness.

WATCH | What to do if you're self-isolating at home for COVID-19:

The province "strongly requests" that Albertans who have returned to Canada after March 12 self-isolate for 14 days. Unless your situation is critical and requires a call to 911, Albertans are advised to call Health Link at 811 before visiting a physician, hospital or other health-care facility.

You can find Alberta Health Services' latest coronavirus updates here.