The number of COVID-19 cases continues to rise throughout the world. Due to the pandemic, Alberta's first COVID-19 death has been confirmed by officials. This occurrence follows several Albertan cities declaring a state of emergency. 

Just days ago, Calgary and Banff declared states of emergency. Now, officials have come forward to confirm that one Albertan has died from the COVID-19 virus in Edmonton.  

In a live press conference, Dr. Deena Hinshaw has confirmed with media that a male in his 60s caught the virus from within his community.

He has since passed, making him the first death in Alberta.  

“I must also sadly report the first death from COVID-19 in our province. This individual was admitted in the ICU in the Edmonton Zone on March 12, and passed away late yesterday. This patient was a male in his 60s with underlying medical conditions,” said Hinshaw. 

The City of Alberta website has since changed the COVID-19 information on its website to include one death and 146 confirmed cases.

As of now, Canada has 736 confirmed cases.

"As heartbreaking as this news is, it was expected. This is a dangerous virus,” said Hinshaw. 

When asked how many more people would die, Hinshaw stated that "it’s difficult to say. It comes down to how we can all collectively prevent spread and flatten the curve.” 

Hinshaw stated that we know what types of conditions cause severe outcomes that make the virus's effects worse.

This particular person did not have all of the known conditions however, Hinshaw did confirm that they had some. In order to keep the person's identity anonymous, Hinshaw is not sharing the specifics at this time. 

When COVID-19 made its way to Alberta, Edmonton doctors were quick to say that they were not prepared

At this time, Justin Trudeau has asked the public to stay home and self-isolate to prevent the spread. 

According to the WHO website, the risk of catching the virus depends on where you are. For most, WHO has confirmed that the risk is low.

Officials have determined that COVID-19 most affects older people and people with pre-existing medical contains including high blood pressure, lung disease, cancer, and diabetes. People with these types of conditions may develop a more serious illness.

“The virus can be very mild for some people and for others it can be fatal. That’s part of the challenge we have. When people hear statistics like 80% of people who get the virus have a mild self-limiting illness, I think for some people that fact is something that sticks in their head as a reason to not take it seriously," said Hinshaw.

Hinshaw was quick to add that even young people can experience severe outcomes or die of the disease and that it should not be taken lightly.

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