Confirmed coronavirus cases in Alberta reaches 39; 2 patients in intensive care

Alberta Health confirmed Saturday afternoon that there are 10 new cases of COVID-19 in the province, bringing the total to 39.

Six of the new cases are in the Calgary zone and four are in the Edmonton zone, Alberta Health said.

Two of the new cases — one in the Edmonton zone and one in the Calgary zone — have been admitted into intensive care, according to Alberta Health. All other new cases are self-isolating at home and expected to make a full recovery.

Alberta Health said eight of the new cases are related to international travel or to a previously confirmed case, adding that the other two cases are being investigated.

Dr. Deena Hinshaw, the province’s chief medical officer of health, addressed school safety concerns amid the virus’ spread, saying the province is monitoring the situation carefully.

“I understand that parents are concerned about their children going to school, and they, along with teachers, school administrators and boards, have questions and concerns,” she said.

“I cannot emphasize enough the time and discussion that continues about this decision. If we do make the decision to close schools, it will be considering long-term closure. This pandemic will not end in a matter of weeks and there won’t be a clear opportunity to reopen schools likely not until September at the earliest.”

Hinshaw stressed the importance of practicing good hygiene during the pandemic and staying away from others if you develop symptoms.

“The most important thing I want Albertans to do is to stay home when feeling sick,” she said.

“Even if you have not travelled, if you have symptoms of cough or even mild cold-like symptoms, you need to stay home and away from others. This is critically important. Although most of those cases would not be COVID-19, we want to make sure we are all practicing the new normal, which is not being out in public when sick.”

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