#Alberta; #Seniors; #SeniorsCare; #Vulnerable; #Covid19; #CovidRelatedDeaths
Alberta (Canada)/Canadian-Media: An alarming rise in the coronavirus infection cases and deaths, compared to the entire rest of the pandemic period, has been reported among Albertans in the age range of 80 and above, media reports said.
Seniors Care in Alberta. Image credit: una.ab.ca
This age group reported 400 new infections in Nov as against 80 in Sep.
Unprecedented surging levels of deaths recorded in Alberta, shows Nov being the deadliest month on record, accounting for 241 of the 640 deaths.
The recent surge among seniors, in particular, is connected to the rising number of outbreaks at long-term care and supportive living facilities and accounted for 64 percent of COVID-19 deaths in the province, said Dr. Deena Hinshaw, the province's chief medical officer of health during a news conference on Dec 8.
Hinshaw said "point of care" rapid testing to long-term care facilities are being considered but added the true protection of seniors will require reducing the spread of the virus across all age groups.
In response to the province's physicians' call for a "circuit-breaker," lockdown Kenney ordered on Dec 8 the strictest measures the province has seen since the spring, including the closure of all casinos and gyms, an end to dine-in service at restaurants and bars, and the imposition of a provincewide mask mandate adding the necessity of these steps given "the hard, mathematical reality of the exponential spread of this virus."
These measures would be effective Sunday, but health authorities are concerned it will take weeks for their effects to be seen in terms of the hospitalization and death data.
Hinshaw said "hospitalizations typically lag behind the rise in cases by about a week to 10 days." which would cause deaths to lag even longer, due to additional delays in reporting.