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COVID-19 in Alberta: 17 weekend deaths as ICU count hits lowest mark since August

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EDMONTON -

The number of Albertans in intensive care units due to COVID-19 hit a 2 1/2 month low on Monday as the province reported 1,068 new cases and 17 new deaths over the weekend.

Monday's update included data from Friday, Saturday and Sunday. 

There are now 519 people in hospital with COVID-19, down 185 from the start of the month and about where the patient count was in early September.

There are 100 patients in intensive care units, the lowest number since Aug. 29.

The deaths are spread across several days and bring the number of Albertans to have died due to COVID-19 up to 3,188.

Among all Albertans, 74.7 per cent have had a first dose and 69.9 per cent have had two doses. Relative to the eligible population, more than 87 per cent have had a first dose and 82 per cent have had a second. 

Unvaccinated Albertans remain significantly more likely to suffer a severe outcome after contracting COVID-19, including hospitalization or death.

The province's chief medical officer of health, Dr. Deena Hinshaw, is expected to return for a media availability on Tuesday afternoon.

QR CODES REQUIRED

Paper vaccine records are no longer accepted in Alberta as of Monday. 

At restaurants, gyms and indoor venues participating in the province's passport system, electronic QR codes are now required. 

Vaccine records with the QR code can be downloaded through the provincial government website or obtained through a registry agent at no cost, and can be printed or displayed on a phone.

A Canadian Armed Forces vaccine record or a First Nations immunization record is also accepted. 

People without any of those will need a negative, privately paid COVID-19 test from within the previous 72 hours, or valid proof of a medical exemption.

COVID-19 RELATED NEWS 

In an effort to encourage vaccine-hesitant Albertans to get a shot, Premier Jason Kenney asked the federal government in September to send Janssen's single-dose vaccine to Alberta. Five thousand doses of the product arrived in Alberta on Friday.

An upper northeast Calgary neighbourhood has the highest vaccination rate in Alberta at 98.6 per cent of its eligible residents having had at least once dose of vaccine. 

Calgary Centre has the highest vaccination rate relative to all residents, regardless of age. 

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