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“Continue to follow the health measures in place: wear a mask in all indoor public settings and hold social gatherings for members of the same family,” said Hinshaw.
The 12 deaths reported on Sunday follow a record 31 on Saturday. A total of 1,284 Albertans died of the virus.
The previous high in daily fatalities was 30, first reported on December 17 and paired on December 23 and January 2.
Of the most recent deaths, two were from Calgary and both were linked to the outbreak in AgeCare Skypointe, which is battling the city’s deadliest outbreak.
Since Christmas Day, 255 Albertans have died of the new coronavirus. It is the deadliest two-week period since the pandemic arrived in the province.
The 811 new cases came from 12,302 tests, resulting in a positivity rate of 6.6 percent and bringing the number of active cases in the province to 14,116. This is slightly less than 14,437 active cases on Saturday.
On Saturday, there was a case of the South African variant and four cases of a separate, but also more contagious, UK variant in Alberta.
Each case is related to travel and poses no risk of further transmission, according to Alberta Health.
O emergence of these variants in Alberta it was not unexpected, according to Dr. Jason Kindrachuk, a virologist at the University of Manitoba.
“Both seem to be able to transmit much more widely than the current circulating strain,” said Kindrachuk, adding that the increased chance of transmission does not come with the increased severity of the disease.
“The problem with broader transmission is, of course, if you have a virus that is spreading widely, you will end up with more cases at a faster rate and as we know that with more cases there are more hospitalizations, there are more ICU admissions. “
The variants will complicate Canada’s public health response, Kindrachuk predicted, with existing measures in place becoming even more essential in reducing spread.
– With files by Alanna Smith and Jason Herring