EDMONTON -- Data on COVID-19 is largely focused on the international, national or provincial level, but statistics compiled by CTV News illustrate how the coronavirus continues to spread through Edmonton and its individual communities.

Alberta Health divides the city of Edmonton up into 15 health subzones roughly named for their home communities. 

The city of Edmonton is distinct from the Edmonton health zone, which includes communities beyond the city itself. Some data, including hospitalizations and test positivity, is provided only at the zone level.

This page is built across eight sections that highlight different aspects of the pandemic's changing toll on Alberta. Scroll down or follow the links below to navigate.

City case statusHospitalizations and deaths | Vaccines  Variants | Spread | Testing | Age data Community (subzone) data

 

CITY OF EDMONTON CASE STATUS

The city of Edmonton has seen its active case count fluctuate from a few dozen to more than 14,000 over the course of the pandemic.

Testing eligiblity has changed throughout the pandemic, meaning the daily new case counts understate the actual number of COVID-19 cases. Results from take-home rapid tests are not included in the province's testing or case count numbers.

The data race above shows how Edmonton's active case count through the pandemic compares to those in other Alberta municipalities on a per capita basis.

The number of active cases represents the number of people confirmed to be infectious with COVID-19. The value can can go up or down depending on the number of new cases and new recoveries on a given day. 

A recovery is someone who contracted COVID-19 but didn't die due to the virus. It is not synonymous with a return to full health as many "long haul" patients report severe symptoms well after their infections have cleared.

The graphs below display daily new cases and the daily change to the city's net active case count. The number of daily new cases is a leading indicator of how COVID-19 is spreading.

Alberta Health defines a recovery as follows:

  • After 14 days from either the time of being tested (confirmed cases) or reported to Alberta Health (probable cases)
  • If hospitalized due to COVID-19, anyone who does not require additional hospitalization or treatment in the 10 days after they left the hospital
  • If tested, such as a health care worker, two negative tests at least 24 hours apart

Scroll down or follow this link for charts on case status in individual subzones.

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HOSPITALIZATIONS AND DEATHS

 

The number of COVID-19 hospitalizations has been reported province-wide since the start of the pandemic, and by health zone since early May 2020, but not by individual cities or facilities.

Tracking hospitalizations is an important indicator of how severely the pandemic is affecting Albertans as well as how the coronavirus is taxing the province's health care system.

The province's hospitalization count includes both infectious and non-infectious patients.

Hospitalizations are a lagging indicator with hospitalizations spiking several weeks after cases rises as the virus runs its course.

But vaccines have reduced the number of severe outcomes among active cases. 

Unvaccinated individuals have experienced severe outcomes, including hospitalization and death, due to COVID-19 at several times the rate of those who have had two doses. 

The Edmonton Zone's baseline ICU capacity is 72 patients.

 

Cases are assigned a location by a patient's home address, but hospitalizations are reported based on the location of hospitalization.

Deaths are outlined below by city boundaries, though they are also reported by health zone and subzone. 

Deaths do not necessarily occur the day before they are reported. They are tracked below by day of reporting as the province doesn't report the actual date of death by city.

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VACCINES

COVID-19 vaccinations promise a way out of the pandemic, in time.

Vaccines have been distributed in Alberta since late 2020 with eligiblity determined by risk factors and age. Most vaccines require a second dose and additional booster doses have been given out since the fall of 2021.

See the above data race for vaccination rates in subzones within the city of Edmonton.

The interactive below displays vaccine outcomes by age and vaccination status as a rate per 100,000 people to account for the sizable population difference between the vaccinated and unvaccinated.

Four vaccines, developed by Pfizer, Moderna, AstraZeneca and Johnson & Johnson, have been authorized for use in Canada to date.

The federal government is responsible for securing the vaccine supply while the individual provinces are tasked with distributing those supplies to their populations.

 

See here for a sortable interactive displaying per cent of population with two doses across Alberta's 132 local geographic areas.

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VARIANTS

Variants occur when a virus develops a set of mutations that change its genetic code enough that it reacts differently than the original strain, but also not enough that it becomes its own virus.

A series of variants that developed in late 2020 drew particular concern due to being more transmissible, and in some cases more deadly, than the initial strain.

These variants are identified by the location of their discovery or through letters and numbers, but efforts have been made to rename them to avoid stigmatizing entire cities and countries.

All confirmed COVID-19 cases have been screened for variants since Feb. 1, 2021 except for two periods during the second and third waves where the number of cases limited testing capacity. 

Alberta Health notes the need for a second screening delays the reporting of variant cases by up to two days, though delays in other provinces are often much longer. 

On April 11, Alberta Health data showed that for the first time, variants made up a majority of the province's active COVID-19 cases.

The B.1.617 Delta variant has been of particular concern with doctors warning it is more transmissible, more deadly and more resistant to vaccines than other strains of COVID-19.

In December of 2021, the province reported its first cases of the Omicron variant. 

Alberta Health has said variants have become, and will continue to be, the dominant strain in Alberta, meaning that every new case should be assumed to be a variant.

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TESTING DATA

Testing data for specific cities isn't available so the above graph displays data from the Edmonton Zone as opposed to the city itself. 

The Edmonton Zone had a population of just over 1.4 million people in 2018, according to AHS. The same year, the province estimated the city of Edmonton's population at just over 1 million people.

Test positivity percentage provides insight into what proportion of daily tests are returned with positive results. It can generally be calculated by dividing the number of positive results by number of tests, but Alberta Health cautions that confirmed cases can occasionally appear the reporting system two to three days later.

The precise figure takes that delay into account and is provided by the province.

Testing eligiblity has changed several times throughout the pandemic, and was limited to a narrow set of groups in January of 2022.

Similar to new cases, test posivity statistics have understated the true number of COVID-19 infections due to testing limits. Results from take-home rapid tests are not included in the province's testing figures.

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SPREAD

The reproduction value, or R-Value, measures the expected number of cases directly caused by one case. It informs how rapidly the coronavirus is spreading and has been cited by the premier as key metric in determining government policy around restrictions. 

The value can be calculated using one of several different models which estimate a number of factors around the virus and population.

A value of one means an infected person will infect one other person, on average. A value above one means the spread is growing. A value below one means the spread is slowing.

The province provides the statistic for the province as a whole as well as for the Edmonton and Calgary health zones (not cities) and the rest of Alberta every second week.

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AGE DATA

Similar to testing data, age-specific data is only available relative to health zones, and not to specific cities. 

The above heat map shows the Edmonton zone's evolving active case count grouped by age ranges and adjusted for population.

The below bar charts show the most recent data of case outcomes by age group since the start of the pandemic.

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COMMUNITIES

These visualizations show how active case counts have changed in Edmonton communities (subzones) over time as well as the same figure but adjusted for the population of each subzone.

Click the legend on each graph to filter for specific subzones or the boxes below to sort by pandemic wave.