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Alberta confirms 77 new COVID-19 cases on Friday

Specimens to be tested for COVID-19 are seen in Surrey, B.C., on Thursday, March 26, 2020. For the last four months, Canada's public health experts have been racing to stop the spread of COVID-19 by trying to figure out how everyone is getting it, and who they may have given it to.
Specimens to be tested for COVID-19 are seen in Surrey, B.C., on Thursday, March 26, 2020. For the last four months, Canada's public health experts have been racing to stop the spread of COVID-19 by trying to figure out how everyone is getting it, and who they may have given it to. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck

EDITOR’S NOTE: This story has been updated to reflect that one death previously attributed to COVID-19 was reclassified by health officials.

Seventy-seven more people in Alberta have been diagnosed with COVID-19, the province announced on Friday.

Alberta Health said that as of Friday afternoon, there were 592 active COVID-19 cases in the province, 50 of those cases involve people being hospitalized and nine of those patients are in intensive care units.

The newest cases bring Alberta’s total number of confirmed cases to 8,596 since the pandemic began. Of those, 7,844 people have recovered.

READ MORE: Coronavirus: Canada adds 370 new cases, 12 deaths Thursday 

The total number of deaths in Alberta attributed to COVID-19 was at 160 on Friday, one less than the day before. Alberta Health said the reason for the decrease was because a death previously attributed to the COVID-19 outbreak at Edmonton’s Misericordia Community Hospital was reviewed again. A determination was made that COVID-19 was not a contributing factor in the fatality.

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Most of Alberta’s active cases are in the Calgary zone (228) and in the Edmonton zone (203).

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As of Friday afternoon, 514,970 coronavirus tests have been completed in Alberta since the pandemic first hit the province.

READ MORE: Task force to investigate Misericordia Hospital COVID-19 outbreak 

According to Alberta Health Services, there were no new deaths or cases on Friday linked to a COVID-19 outbreak at Edmonton’s Misericordia Community Hospital. Five deaths have been linked to the outbreak there and on Thursday, AHS said it would be setting up a formal outbreak investigation task force to deal with the situation.

–With a file from Global News’ Caley Ramsay

Watch below: Some Global News videos about the COVID-19 situation in Alberta.

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For up-to-date stories on the outbreak at the Misericordia Hospital, click here.