Alberta reports 5 deaths at Edmonton continuing care centre along with 113 new COVID-19 cases
EDMONTON -- Dr. Deena Hinshaw reported five more COVID-19 deaths and 113 new cases on Thursday.
The new numbers brought the death toll to 195 and active cases to 1,408 across the province.
All five deaths are connected to the outbreak at Good Samaritan Southgate Care Centre in Edmonton where 70 people are currently infected with COVID-19.
"This is a stark example of the devastation this virus can cause. I want to offer condolences to the families and friends of these individuals," the chief medical officer of health said.
"We're taking this outbreak extremely seriously…we will continue to monitor the outbreak and take whatever steps needed to support the health of residents and staff."
On Monday Hinshaw said Alberta Health Services had taken over Good Samaritan Southgate Care Centre, but as it turns out, the province considered it but did not deem it necessary.
"What I can say is that as of late last week AHS did offer significant additional support to this particular facility to make sure they did have everything they needed."
AHS conducted more than 8,700 tests in the past 24 hours and just over 675,000 since March.
After a successful pilot project last month, AHS is expanding the Pharmacy Asymptomatic Testing Program to all community pharmacies who want to participate.
The pilot project at a select number of pharmacies across Alberta conducted more than 10,000 tests.
The program is voluntary and pharmacies will have to enroll and wait for supplies. Asymptomatic Albertans will still have to phone to make an appointment, Hinshaw said.
"Please remember, for the safety of yourself and others, only people with no symptoms and no known exposure to COVID-19 can be tested at a pharmacy," she said. "If you have symptoms or if you know that you have been exposed, please book testing through AHS through the online assessment tool or by calling 811."
For a list of participating pharmacies, click here.