1 additional death from COVID-19 in Alberta; province will send equipment to other areas of Canada: Kenney

Click to play video: 'Coronavirus outbreak: Alberta to send hundreds of thousands of PPE to other provinces'
Coronavirus outbreak: Alberta to send hundreds of thousands of PPE to other provinces
WATCH ABOVE: Alberta’s Premier Jason Kenny said on Saturday that he directed Alberta Health Services “to go big and order as many supplies as they can so we can share extra supplies with fellow Canadians.” – Apr 11, 2020

Alberta Premier Jason Kenney announced Saturday in Edmonton that the province will be sending out personal protective equipment, including N95 masks, to Quebec, Ontario, and B.C.

“We are able to contribute 750,000 N95 masks, 4.5 million procedural masks and 30 million protective gloves to provinces that are right now in need,” said Kenney.

Kenney made the announcement with Health Minister Tyler Shandro and Alberta Health Services’ chief officer of contracting procurement and supply management Jitendra Prasad.

Kenney also provided the latest numbers of COVID-19 in the province. He said that on Saturday, there was an addition of 69 infections, bringing the provincial total to 1,569.

Kenney added that one other person had died from the virus, in the Calgary zone, bringing the total deaths in the province to 40.

Saturday’s additional death was a woman in her 70s who was a resident at the McKenzie Towne Continuing Care Centre, said Kenney.

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Click to play video: 'Coronavirus outbreak: 69 new cases of COVID-19 in Alberta, 1 new death'
Coronavirus outbreak: 69 new cases of COVID-19 in Alberta, 1 new death

He said that brings the total confirmed cases at that seniors’ home to 83, with 18 of the provincial deaths linked to the centre.

“Those are particular concern to us,” he said. “Continuing care facilities are particularly vulnerable to a pandemic of this nature.”

He said that 47 Albertans are hospitalized and 13 people are in intensive care.

Despite those numbers, Kenney said that the recovery rate is high in the province.

“We have seen a 774 recovered cases, which is 48 per cent of all known infections,” Kenney said. “Our numbers are far lower than the hardest hit areas of Europe and the United States.”

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Shandro said that the province has recently signed supply contracts totalling more than $200 million.

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Shandro said that by the end of April, Alberta Health Services will have 2,250 acute care beds, almost 1,100 ICU beds and about 760 ventilators.

Click to play video: 'Coronavirus outbreak: Alberta’s health minister says province ‘more than ready for the peak’ of COVID-19 outbreak'
Coronavirus outbreak: Alberta’s health minister says province ‘more than ready for the peak’ of COVID-19 outbreak

“This is more than enough to meet the projected demand for hospital services during the peak of the virus,” Shandro said.

Kenney announced Tuesday that under a probable scenario, COVID-19 could claim between 400 to 3,100 Albertans’ lives by the end of summer.

He also said under this scenario, the province could see as many as 800,000 total infections in that time frame.

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Prasad said that he is confident the province will have enough supplies for Albertans due to close work with global supply chains.

“We [AHS] work with them every night,” Prasad said. “There’s a high level of confidence in the supplies that we are working with.

“We’re very confident when we made those commitments to those provinces that we are, in fact, going to be able to meet the needs of Albertans.”

Kenney said that Prasad helped lead the charge of getting Alberta ready for the virus.

“When Mr. Prasad first heard intimations about a potential virus of this nature late last year, AHS surged orders for equipment to get ahead of the queue,” Kenney said.

“That is why we are now receiving enormous shipments of supplies, PPE, and we are on track, in fact, ahead of track.”

Ontario will receive:

  • 250,000 N95 masks
  • 2.5 million procedural masks
  • 15 million gloves
  • 87,000 goggles
  • 50 ventilators

Quebec will receive:

  • 250,000 N95 masks
  • Two million procedural masks
  • 15 million gloves

British Columbia will receive:

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  • 250,000 N95 masks

Alberta currently has the third-highest number of cases of COVID-19 in Canada.

Kenney said that while there have been previous political issues between the provinces, such as opposition from Quebec and B.C. against the Trans Mountain pipeline, now is a time for unity.

“People’s lives are at stake,” Kenney said. “And so we are going to look past disagreements to saving lives, to saving Canadians lives. And I obviously hope that our fellow Canadians will recognize in this contribution, the generous role that Albertans have always played across the country.

“I hope that one of the lessons to be learned from this crisis is we are all in this together. I hope there will be a renewed sense of national solidarity,” Kenney said.

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Quebec has the most cases, with the total as of Friday evening sitting at 11,677, and Ontario has the second most with 6,648.

B.C. has 1,410 cases, and every other province and territory sits below 500 cases. Nunavut remains the only part of Canada with no COVID-19 infections.


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