OHS official to join chief medical officer at Alberta COVID-19 update

Albertans may get more information today about COVID-19 outbreaks linked to meat-packing plants south of Calgary that have sickened hundreds of people.

Lisa Chen, director of Occupational Health and Safety, is scheduled to attend a news conference Wednesday to answer questions related to recent OHS reviews, the province said in a news release.

At Wednesday’s news conference, Alberta’s Chief Medical Officer of Health will provide her latest update on COVID-19 and the ongoing work to protect public health.

The news conference is scheduled for 3:30 p.m. You can watch it here.

The biggest outbreak in the province involves a Cargill meat-processing plant in High River. As of Tuesday, 401 workers from the plan had tested positive. One worker had died, and another 114 cases have been linked to that outbreak.

OHS is currently working through the formal process to determine whether to open a fatality investigation, Adrienne South, a spokesperson for the provincial labour minister, said in an email.

Public health officials say a dedicated task force of 200 staff is working on reducing the spread, with particular attention paid to households that may not have space to maintain self-isolation.

Another outbreak at the JBS Food Canada plant in Brooks has been linked to 77 cases. 

Here are the COVID-19 number as of Tuesday:

  • Total number of deaths in Alberta: 61
  • Deaths by health zone: Calgary zone, 41; North zone, 10; Edmonton zone, nine; Central zone, one.
  • Total number of cases in Alberta: 3,095
  • Total number of people who have recovered: 1,273
  • Total number of cases in continuing care centres: 358
  • Deaths among residents of continuing care facilities: 39
  • Total number of people in hospital: 64
  • Total number of people in ICU beds: 18
  • Cases thought to involve community transmission: 281
  • Total number of people who have been tested: 104,370

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