April 4 COVID-19 update: North zone up 11, one in Slave Lake

Pearl Lorentzen

Lakeside Leader

For the second day in a row, Slave Lake region has one new COVID-19 case, says the interactive map on  covid19stats.alberta.ca. This case brings the total up to four cases.

This case may be in the Town of Slave Lake, some where in the M.D. of Lesser Slave River, or as far north as Red Earth Creek. The data only says it and all cases are in the Slave Lake geographic health region, not specifically the town.

North zone

This is one of 11 new cases in the North zone, bring the total up to 68. Most of the other new cases are near Slave Lake health region.

Three of the new cases are in the health region just west of Slave Lake, High Prairie, which now has 10 cases, including one death of a man in Grouard. The man was one of the first two North zone cases on March 16th. He died on March 30th.

Six of the new cases are in the health region west of that, which is Fahler health region. This region has 17 cases, including one death in McLennan. This death was on April 2. He was one of the seniors infected in an outbreak at a seniors home in that town.

The final case is further afield in Bonnyville health region in the southern part of the North zone by the Saskatchewan border.

There were no new deaths in the North zone, but two in Alberta, both in the Calgary zone. Across the province, the total number of COVID-19 deaths is twenty. Of these, 13 were in the Calgary zone, four in the Edmonton zone, and three in the North zone.

There are currently 19 geographic health regions within the North zone with COVID-19 cases. This not all of the health regions. For example, Wabasca and Athabasca to the east of Slave Lake region are at zero. For all North zone cases see chart at the bottom of this section.

Understanding the numbers

Backlog

Since testing started it took up to four days to get test results back. This rate was slowed the week before last. Over the last week, the provincial lab has been catching up on a backlog of cases.

It is possible that the large number of cases today in the north zone reflects this backlog. However, this is not the largest number of North zone cases. The largest number of new cases in the North zone was on March 27th, with 15 new cases.

Otherwise, since the first two cases on March 16th, 10 days after cases were confirmed in Calgary, the number of North zone cases has increases from zero to six new cases a day.

Running tally

The North zone numbers and the numbers in each region include current cases, potentially recovered cases, and deaths.

There are no confirmed deaths in Slave Lake. In the neighbouring health regions of High Prairie and Falher, the deaths of their patients are included in their numbers.

There are times when the numbers decrease. This does not mean someone has recovered or died.

A decrease in the number of cases in a region, says John Muir, Alberta Government Communications Director, Communications and Public Engagement, likely means that the person’s address was entered wrong or they no longer live in the area.

He continues, it does not mean that someone has recovered, as the interactive map on covid19stats.alberta.ca keeps a running tally of cases of COVID-19.

For example, the first cases in Slave Lake were on March 20th. On March 28th, Slave Lake numbers decreased from three to two.

Yesterday, they went back up to three and now are at four.

The same thing has happened in the High Prairie region, Jasper and a few others. It is not cause for concern or hope.

All North zone cases

Health RegionApril 4
Slave Lake (Two March 20, one April 3) + one new4
High Prairie (1st March 16) (three new)10
Falher (1st five March 28) (six new)17
Peace River8
Westlock (1st March 25)1
Wabasca0
Athabasca0
City of Grande Prairie2
Grande Prairie County (1st March 24)1
Barrhead2
Bonnyville (one new)6
Cold Lake2
Jasper5
Hinton (1st March 23)3
Fort McMurray (2nd March 25)3
Valleyview1
High Level (1st Mar. 28)1
Mayerthorpe (1st March 28)2
unknown0
Total North zone62
(Data is from covid19stats.alberta.ca and is accurate as of March 4 at 5 p.m. only those regions near Slave Lake health region or with cases are listed.)

Alberta

The first COVID-19 case in Alberta was confirmed on March 6th in Calgary.

As of April 4 at 2 p.m., there are 106 new COVID-19 cases in Alberta, says covid19stats.alberta.ca. The total number of cases is 1,181. Within this number there are 240 confirmed recoveries.

There are two new deaths in Alberta, both in the Calgary zone, which brings the total up to 20 across the province. (See North zone for break down).

Throughout the outbreak, there have been 75 hospitalizations, of whom 25 have been admitted to intensive care units (ICU), says the COVID-19 stats as of April 4th.

This is only one more hospitalization and ICU admission than the April 3rd COVID-19 update, which had the current cases of people in hospital at 39, of whom 15 were in (ICU).

Quick facts from the Alberta government

  • The most important measures that Albertans can take to prevent respiratory illnesses, including COVID-19, is to practice good hygiene.
    • This includes cleaning your hands regularly for at least 20 seconds, avoiding touching your face, coughing or sneezing into your elbow or sleeve, disposing of tissues appropriately, and staying home and away from others if you are sick.
  • Anyone who has health concerns or is experiencing symptoms of COVID-19 should complete an online COVID-19 self-assessment.
  • For recommendations on protecting yourself and your community, visit alberta.ca/COVID19.

Related articles

North zone deaths

First North zone death ‘Grouard man dies from COVID-19’

Second North zone death ‘April 1 COVID-19 update: second North zone death, one more case in HP’

Third North zone death ‘April 2 COVID-19 update: death in McLennan, four new cases in Falher region’

Other

‘April 3 COVID-19 update: Slave Lake back to three, five new deaths in Alberta’

Things to do while social distancing – Kids’ Letters – call out

Self-isolating or social distancing; maybe try bird watching, bird landscaping, or citizen science?

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