Alberta adds fewer than 1K cases for first time since late March, positivity rate remains high
EDMONTON -- Alberta added 721 new COVID-19 cases on Monday, the first time the number of daily new cases was less than 1,000 since April 6 and the smallest daily increase since March 30.
The number of active cases fell to 21,288, the first time the province has had fewer than 22,000 actives since April 30.
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The number of patients in intensive care units continued to remain near record high levels with 181 receiving care at the end of Sunday. Those are included in the 678 patients receiving COVID-19 care in hospital at the end of Sunday.
The transmission of the coronavirus also appears to be slowing. On Monday, all four regions reported a registered value less than one for the first time since Feb. 8-14.
The province reported five more deaths on Monday, including that of a man in his 60s linked to an outbreak at CNRL Horizon in Wood Buffalo. The deaths bring the number of COVID-19 fatalities in Alberta up to 2,148 since the start of the pandemic.
Alberta Premier Jason Kenney appealed for patience earlier Monday, saying relaxed COVID-19 health restrictions could be coming if vaccinations continue to trend up and hospitalizations level off.
Kenney said rules around self-isolation quarantine requirements for vaccinated could be relaxed "later this week" to reflect "the lower level of ... risk that they pose."
The premier said he expects the province to surpass the 50 per cent mark of eligible Albertans to have had at least one vaccine dose in the day.
"We should be, at some point in June, pushing 70 per cent of the eligible population vaccinated ... if so, that bodes very well for a broad reopening later this summer," he said.
"We have a ways to go yet."
Kenney said his government's reopening plan will be tied to the percentage of population to get vaccinated as well as hospitalizations.
"We need that ... vaccine-cautious share of the population to realize that their ticket to freedom and way back to normal lies in getting vaccinated," he said.
"Please do your part by following the public health measures for just a little while longer, and getting vaccinated as soon as you can."