Alberta's reopening plan is unfolding before our eyes and it looks like some more announcements of progress are rolling in, too. On Wednesday, May 6, health officials came forward to say that the Alberta COVID-19 curve has flattened. Though Alberta's curve may not have flattened as quickly as neighbouring provinces, it appears it's finally getting there.
At the very beginning of this pandemic, the province shut down every business or activity that was deemed non-essential.
As COVID-19 case numbers begin to lower, Premier Jason Kenney has announced a plan to reopen the province.
Phase one of the plan is set to begin on Thursday, May 14, and will bring along with it many changes including the slow reopening of businesses and restaurants.
According to the Calgary mayor, in order to have a slow reopening like this, there must be a period of two weeks that show declining COVID-19 cases.
It seems as though this decline is happening as officials came forward on Wednesday, May 6, to address the public on the current situation.
During the speech, Dr. Deena Hinshaw, chief medical officer of health, stated that there has been a recent drop in the number of active cases.
While this is good news, she said, this does not mean the virus is gone and health mandates will remain part of our new reality for the foreseeable future.
“We have, I think, flattened the curve in general, across the province, and some locations are more flat than others,” said the health official.
During the question period of the update, Hinshaw did note that there are certain areas of the province that have more cases than others.
But just because the curve has flattened in the eyes of health officials, it doesn’t mean that outbreaks and the overall situation aren't being monitored.
During her speech, Hinshaw touched on the recent outbreak at Cargill meatpacking facility and discussed what health orders would be put in place moving forward to ensure the safety of everyone, including their staff.
“I want to emphasize that the health and safety of these workers and all Albertans remains our first priority,” said Hinshaw.
The doctor noted that everyone should still be doing their due diligence including washing hands, practicing hygiene, and social distancing.
Within the province, anyone showing symptoms can receive testing.
The provincial website reads that Alberta currently has 82 people in the hospital for COVID-19 out of the confirmed 5,963 cases. A majority of the case have come from the Calgary and Edmonton zones.
With 112 deaths, 3,552 people have recovered.