Alberta reports first 2 cases of COVID-19 variant first identified in Brazil
EDMONTON -- Alberta reported 388 new COVID-19 cases on Sunday and 66 variant cases, including the first two cases of the variant first identified in Brazil to be reported in the province.
In addition to the two cases of the P.1 variant, one more case of the B.1.351 variant first identified in South Africa was also confirmed, bringing the total number of confirmed cases of that variant in the province to 16. An additional 63 cases of the B.1.1.7 variant first identified in the U.K. were also reported on Sunday.
The variant first identified in Brazil was found in Calgary. Both cases are travel related and in isolation.
Variant cases require a second screening of a positive test meaning the daily reported number is a mix of current and historical cases.
There are currently 4,697 active cases of COVID-19 in the province, and a total of 8,343 tests were completed on Saturday.
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When it comes to hospitalizations, there are 248 Albertans in hospital, with 38 in the ICU.
As of Saturday, 357,983 doses of COVID-19 vaccine had been administered in Alberta.
Phase 2A of the vaccine rollout is slated to begin on Monday. It will include:
- Albertans aged 65 to 74
- First Nations, Metis and Inuit people born in 1971 or earlier
- Staff and residents of licensed supportive living facilities who have not gotten the vaccine
AstraZeneca vaccines are also now available to Albertans born between 1957 and 1961, as well as First Nations, Metis and Inuit born between 1972 and 1986, but with appointments filling up fast, the province says fewer than 5,000 doses of that vaccine remain.
Alberta's chief medical officer of health, Dr. Deena Hinshaw, will return for an in-person update on Monday.