The city of Lethbridge has recorded a spike in new cases of the novel coronavirus.
Data from Alberta Health identified 18 new cases of COVID-19 in the city on Tuesday, bringing the community’s total case count from the start of the pandemic to 201.
Of the city’s 201 total positive cases, 29 were listed as active on Tuesday.
Lethbridge County has also recorded a significant jump in cases which now total 71. On Tuesday, there were five new cases identified, and over the weekend (Oct. 2 – Oct 4.) there were 18.
With 17 active cases, the county is currently listed under a “watch” as part of the province’s COVID-19 monitoring system.
Alberta Health Services (AHS) told Global News late Tuesday afternoon it had identified an outbreak associated with a church community in the Lethbridge area.
“All individuals exposed to these cases are being contacted directly by AHS and instructed to follow requirements for isolation and testing,” AHS said in a statement.
“At this time, more than 20 new cases have been confirmed as linked to this outbreak.”
AHS added case identification is ongoing, and that it would not be identifying the church community involved to protect patient confidentiality.
Read more: What’s a COVID-19 close contact?
Lethbridge and Lethbridge County, which are part of AHS’ South zone, now account for about 75 per cent of the zone’s total number of active coronavirus cases.
AHS reminds southern Albertans to continue to be vigilant in following guidelines around handwashing, physical distancing and cohort groups.