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Alberta's COVID-19 slope low, Kenney says

Last Updated Apr 8, 2020 at 4:49 pm MDT

Premier Jason Kenney presented information regarding Alberta's COVID-19 infection rate Wednesday. (Credit: Livestream Wednesday, April 8)

CALGARY (660 NEWS) – In an announcement Wednesday, Kenney said Alberta is seeing a much lower COVID-19 infection spread when compared to other jurisdictions around the world.

Regarding infection per capita, Kenney said Alberta is similar to countries like South Korea and Alberta’s overall trend slope remains low.

However, he said that it’s still early for Alberta.

“This is encouraging data that we are doing better than most countries but it’s nothing we can take for granted.”

Among the other provinces, Alberta rates are comparable to Ontario and British Columbia.

However, that can also be a result of Alberta testing at a much higher frequency.

“If you take that into account, we are doing better than, certainly, the larger provinces,” says Kenney.

Kenney said the most important stat to show the possible COVID-19 impact is how many of the confirmed cases end up in the hospital or intensive care.

When compared to provinces like Ontario and British Columbia, Alberta has a similar per capita infection ratio.

However, Alberta is much lower when it comes to cases being admitted to hospital, with nearly half the amount in Ontario and a third in B.C.

“We are doing better than the major provinces in terms of hospitalization.”

In regards to deaths, Alberta has a similar ratio, and Kenney says that’s due to the McKenzie Towne outbreak.

Kenney added there are multiple reasons as to why Alberta is seeing a lower level of hospitalization than other provinces.

One of the reasons is due to Alberta’s advanced rate of testing in order to get ahead of the curve and contain it.

“Meaning, when somebody gets tested positive, we’ve been able to reach out, figure out (who they) were in contact with, get in touch with those people quickly, and then have them tested,” says Kenney.

In addition, Alberta’s infections started a few weeks later than other provinces, it has the youngest population in Alberta, and populations are more spread out than in other provinces.