Alta. reports 411 COVID-19 infections a year after its first case

EDMONTON — On March 5, 2020, Alberta reported its first case of COVID-19. On the same day a year later, the province added 411 infections of the disease it now knows so well.

Alberta has counted 135,196 since that first case in the Calgary zone. Of those, 128,644 have recovered, 4,639 are active, and 1,913 have died.

There are currently 243 Albertans in hospital, including 44 in ICU.

VYING FOR VACCINES

The difference between then and now is what could put an end to the pandemic: vaccines.

On Thursday, the province announced its next phase of vaccinations as well as details for the AstraZeneca rollout, and on Friday morning, Health Canada approved the Johnson & Johnson shot.

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With Pfizer-BioNTech, Moderna, Oxford-AstraZeneca, and soon, Johnson & Johnson, Alberta is aiming to give a first dose to all adults by the end of June.

University of Alberta Hospital Dr. Lorne Tyrell, like Health Minister Tyler Shandro and Chief Medical Officer of Health Dr. Deena Hinshaw on Thursday, said any vaccine would be effective against COVID-19.

“I think any one of these vaccines is going to help to give us protection and to help improve immunity for the individual, but also improve herd immunity for the community,” he said.

“I see absolutely no reason why someone would turn down a vaccine that has been this well-developed and this well-scrutinized.”

It’s still unclear how many Johnson & Johnson doses Alberta will get, but Shandro confirmed they will be added to Phase 2A once logistics set.

Alberta Health Services had administered 275,719 doses as of Thursday, and fully immunized 90,486 people.

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