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Two more deaths, 138 new cases of COVID-19 in Alberta

Last Updated Apr 15, 2020 at 6:26 am MDT

CALGARY (660 NEWS) – In her daily COVID-19 announcement Tuesday, Chief Medical Officer of Health Dr. Deena Hinshaw said Alberta now has 1,870 confirmed cases of COVID-19 and 48 deaths.

In the past 24 hours, 138 new cases were confirmed as well as two additional deaths.

Both deaths were at continuing care facilities with one at the McKenzie Towne Continuing Care Centre in Calgary and the other at the Shepherd’s Care Kensington Campus in Edmonton.

There have been a total of 21 deaths at the McKenzie Towne Centre.

“To the family and friends of these people, and to all who have recently lost loved ones to any cause, I offer my deep condolences,” said Hinshaw.

“While we can start to become numb to these numbers as time goes on, each one of these individuals had a life that mattered and people who loved them.”

The vast majority of newly confirmed cases are in the Calgary zone, something Hinshaw said is due to the increased amount of testing in that particular zone.

Of the confirmed 1,870 cases, 914 have recovered, 37 more than the day prior.

Hinshaw said that a total of 2,868 tests have been done within the last 24 hours.

Hinshaw said they are now focusing on testing measures in areas of high risk, like in continuing care facilities where 214 cases and 30 deaths have been confirmed.

Any staff who display symptoms of the virus will be tested and anyone who interacts with those at high-risk will be screened daily prior to working.

Those who work within 2 metres of those at risk will be required to wear facemasks for the duration of their shift.

AHS guidelines will continue to be followed, along with additional mandatory advanced cleaning to limit possible infection.

“Protecting the health of residents and staff in these facilities is our top priority,” said Hinshaw.

Health Minister Tyler Shandro announced that a $3 million grant will be given to Caregivers Alberta to provide proper support.

Expanded hours for phone helplines, referral systems for those needing support, and updated support programs will be brought about due to the grant.

“Our ability to weather this pandemic in the weeks and the months head depends on how well we take care of one another,” said Shandro.