Trusted Official InformationAs this is an evolving situation, all updates can be found at:
- Alberta Government has the most complete official information available at www.alberta.ca/covid19
- ReLaunch Guidance www.alberta.ca/biz-connect.aspx
- Alberta Health Services www.ahs.ca/covid
- Canadian Public Health www.canada.ca
This webpage Update Log:
- This page updated on May 16th with reopening statistics and explainations.
- As Canada Reopens, What Coronavirus (COVID-19) numbers should we be watching?
Government of Canada resources
- Canada's response to COVID-19
- Outbreak update – federal government hub for daily COVID-19 updates
- Technical guidance for communities, schools/daycares, health professionals and business
- Community-based measures to mitigate the spread of COVID-19
- Risk-informed decision-making for mass gatherings
- COVID-19 awareness resources
- Vulnerable populations
- How to isolate at home
- Travellers returning to Canada
- Travellers returning from Iran, Italy and Hubei Province, China
- Know the facts: Factsheet | Infographic
- Be prepared: Factsheet | Infographic
- Reduce the spread of COVID-19: Wash your hands
- How to care for a person with COVID-19 at home: Advice for caregivers
- Know the difference: Self-monitoring, self-isolation, and isolation for COVID-19
“This is also not the time for people to go out to their summer cottages or seasonal villages to self-isolate. Services and supports are limited in these communities.” - Dr. Hinshaw, Chief Medical Officer of Health in Alberta
What Is Happening?Since its appearance in Wuhan, China in December 2019, the novel coronavirus COVID-19 has spread globally, affecting over hundreds of thousands people so far and has now been classified as a pandemic by the World Health Organization.
COVID-19 can cause serious respiratory illness. Because it is a new virus with no treatment or immunity in people, it is critical for people with any symptoms (cough, fever, shortness of breath, runny nose or sore throat) to stay home and self-isolate to keep it from spreading.
In Alberta, “Given global spread, it is likely that new cases will continue to be detected in our province. While most people who catch this virus have a mild illness, it can be severe or even deadly for our elderly, and those with other medical conditions.” - Dr. Deena Hinshaw, Chief Medical Officer of Health
What you can do?
- Watch this short video on how you can be better prepared.
- Avoid international travel at this time
- Prepare for "social-distancing" (trying to keep yourself away from other people, especially large crowds)
- Wash your hands often and well
- Cover your cough
- Avoid touching eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands
- Avoid close contact with people who are sick
- Clean and disinfect surfaces that are frequently touched
- Stay at home and away from others if you are feeling ill
Remember, the fewer people who catch the disease, the better hospitals can help those at risk.
What Should I Do If I Think I Have COVID-19?
If you have symptoms such as fever, cough and difficulty breathing and have travelled outside Canada or have been exposed to someone who has COVID-19, stay home and call Health Link 811.
Do NOT go to a physician’s office, a health care facility or a lab without consulting with Health Link 811 first. Call 911 if you are seriously ill and need immediate medical attention and inform them that you may have COVID-19.
If you are under quarantine and are running low on supplies, remember you can phone the local store to place & pay for your order and then have a neighbour or friend make the delivery without making any contact with you.
Here are some colour and black'n white versions of posters for your organization windows.
|Open for Business
||Prevention Awareness||Prevent the Spread (for Facilities)|
As Canada Reopens, What Coronavirus (COVID-19) numbers should we be watching?
- Are we testing enough, in relation to the scale of the problem?
- referred as "test positivity" WHO looks for a number under 10%
- Whether a place is testing enough is crucial to whether it can afford to reopen: with such a high-stakes decision, the more we know the better.
- Applied to Canada, the graph below seems reassuring, except for Quebec, where test positivity rates have stayed stubbornly above 15 per cent for nearly a month.
- How fast are COVID-19 confirmed cases doubling?
- Given that we know that too fast an increase in cases would overwhelm our ability to cope with them, it’s important to know how fast we are growing.
- As you can see, it’s between a week and two weeks for most provinces, other than in Quebec.
- Please note that the chart below is a ‘logarithmic chart: the vertical axis expands at an accelerating rate.
- What does Canada's Coronavirus Death Data Mean?
- End of May the data shows that we’re flattening the most important curve, which is how many Canadians the virus kills.
- As you can see, there’s a lot of daily variation in coronavirus death. It can get distracting if you want to understand trends, so it’s probably more helpful to look at the solid line shows a 7-day average.
- The line starts flattening in mid-April, about a month after Canada started going into lockdown: this makes sense, since people who die of coronavirus generally die about three or four weeks after infection. So it’s helpful to think about the data as backdated by a month or so.
- As we learn more about the coronavirus, we are getting closer to figuring out what the real death rate is: it’s challenging at the moment, because we don’t know how many people truly have the disease. One study estimated it as .37 per cent, which means the ratio may be roughly 300:1 of Canadians have coronavirus for each fatality.
- Applied to Canada, that would mean that about 1.2 million Canadians are, or have been, positive for coronavirus, and that testing is catching about 5 per cent of the cases that are actually in the community. For this to be true there would have to be a very large number of asymptomatic Canadians.
- What is the speed of transmission? Is the Pandemic getting worse?
- Commonly referred to as R0 or “R knot” The math of how it’s calculated is complex, but the concept is very simple: on average, how many other people does someone with coronavirus infect?
- We want to see an R number as far below 1 as possible. So that 1 infected person spreads to as few OTHER people as possible.
- In mid-March, as Canada started to shut down schools and businesses, the R number was a potentially catastrophic 2.8. That had the potential for an out-of-control pandemic: if one person on average infects 2.8 people, and each of those people infected 2.8 more people, hospitals would quickly have been overwhelmed.
- Now, as you can see, the R number is around .8, which means the outbreak is shrinking, though not as quickly as we would like.
- How is our Health Care System handling the infection rate?
- We already know the key to all these measures has been to protect our health care system.
- Dr. Hinshaw has stated that they continuously use numbers in the hospitals and ICU/acute care rates along with the number of new confirmed cases as a measure to know whether restrictions will be lifted. These graphs can be found above.
- Ultimately the preference is our system has 50% capacity before more restrictions are opened.