Alberta is already thinking ahead to the next phase in their relaunch. On Monday, May 25, Dr. Deena Hinshaw, Alberta's Chief Medical Officer of Health, talked about the upcoming Stage 2 of Alberta's reopening plan. She said that the earliest possible date when Alberta can move to that stage is June 19, 2020.
A member of the media called into the daily COVID-19 press conference and asked Dr. Hinshaw if the province intends to move towards Stage 2 soon.
"The date that has been put out as the earliest possible is June 19," she said.
She said that it's very encouraging to see that the case numbers have remained low even after Stage 1 of reopening got off the ground on May 14.
But she said that the province still needs to watch the numbers in Calgary and Brooks. Both cities had a slight delay in their relaunching schedule because of the larger case counts.
"The most important thing in our relaunch is that it's data-driven," said Dr. Hinshaw.
She said that health officials might consider alternate dates if the "numbers remain good."
Under Stage 2 of the reopening, places like movie theatres, libraries, tanning salons, nail salons, and more would be allowed to reopen.
However, the physical distancing rule of six-feet-apart would still be in place when the province moves into Stage 2.
Dr. Hinshaw said that "it's up to all of us together" to keep the COVID-19 infections low.
But she also noted that it can take a while for the businesses to open and for them to see the full impact of the relaunch.
In terms of numbers, she said the province is keeping things relatively low and she congratulated all Albertans for this "early success."
"We also need to be mindful that it's not over yet," said the top doctor.
Calgary and Brooks opened their restaurants and hair salons on Monday, May 25. So Dr.
Hinshaw said that she and her team will be keeping an eye on the businesses in those two cities for the next 10 days.
Dr. Hinshaw said that Albertans should take this as a good sign. "A sign of what we can accomplish together when we continue to follow public health measures," she added.