Alberta outbreak of Brazilian COVID-19 variant linked to three workplaces

Joanna Estrada
April 6, 2021

Alberta Health spokesman Tom McMillan said the province is not providing details on specific locations where the outbreaks have been confirmed at this time in order to protect patient confidentiality.

Alberta's top doctor says an outbreak of the COVID-19 variant first found in Brazil appears to be linked to a large employer with multiple sites across Western Canada.

Both Bow Valley High School and Cochrane High are listed under "Outbreak Status 'on the province's School Status Map, and reporting between five and ten cases of the virus".

Hinshaw says so far three of those infections are confirmed to be the more risky Brazilian variant, but she adds that's likely to increase as more results come in.

The second, unrelated P.1 outbreak has been reported at a workplace in Calgary Zone, Hinshaw said.

Five cases are now linked to that outbreak, including one confirmed case of the P.1 variant. "Anyone at risk is being directly contacted and supported".

To date, there are 26 confirmed cases of COVID-19 across worksites in the Central Zone and North Zone and of those, three are confirmed to be the variant of concern, Hinshaw tweeted.

Alberta Health updated its online data on Monday afternoon, tallying up case numbers confirmed from Thursday to Sunday.

There are 312 people now hospitalized with COVID-19, an increase of 20 since numbers were last provided on Friday.

That rapid rise has been fueled by variant cases, which now make up 39.2 per cent of all active cases, an increase from 27.2 per cent registered last Monday.

More than 9,102 tests were completed Sunday. "Elizabeth Barrett Elementary and Fireside School are now listed under 'Alert Status" reporting between two to four active cases. Test positivity has now exceeded eight per cent for the last four straight days.

Hinshaw said she is concerned about rising cases, including variants, in the province.

She thanked the public for their patience.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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