COVID Weekly: Slave Lake and area under extended COVID-19 restrictions

Pearl Lorentzen
Lakeside Leader

May 5 to May 26 (possibly longer) the M.D. of Lesser Slave River (incl. Slave Lake) and many of its neighbours are under expanded COVID-19 restrictions. 

The new threshold is “communities with more than 50 cases per 100,000 people and with 30 or more active cases,” says the government of Alberta’s news release. Once this threshold is passed, restrictions remain for a minimum of three weeks. Fines for not following the restrictions are $2,000. Regions below the threshold also have stricter measures – called Phase 0.  

Outbreaks

In the eight days from April 30 to May 7, Kinuso and Roland Michener Secondary Schools were added to the list of schools with active cases. 

As of May 6, both had three active cases, says High Prairie School Division. 

Nearby

Over the eight days from April 30 to May 7 (active cases on May 7), the COVID situation in Lesser Slave and its closest neighbours was:

  • Lesser Slave – 48 active (34 new & 20 recovered) – one school (new)
  • Big Lakes – 69 active (46 new & 64 recovered) – four schools (one new)
  • Westlock County – 60 active (39 new & 21 recovered) – three schools.
  • M.D. of Opportunity – nine active (four new, one recovered, & one died)
  • Woodlands County – five active (two new & two recovered)
  • Whitecourt – 125 active (95 new & 31 recovered) – one lodge (new) & three schools.
  • Athabasca County – 67 active (45 new & 31 recovered) – one lodge (new), one school, & one business.
  • Northern Sunrise County – 15 active (four new & 24 recovered)

Lesser Slave cases could be in Slave Lake, Sawridge First Nation, or in the M.D. from Assineau to Flatbush.

Died

From April 30 to May 7, six people died from COVID in the AHS North Zone. The closest was from Opportunity, others were from the County of Barrhead, City of Grande Prairie, Grande Prairie County and MacKenzie County (x2). They were four men (one each in their 20s, 30s, 40s, & 80+), and two women (one each in their 30s & 80+).

Vaccines

At the moment everyone 30+ can book a COVID-19 vaccine. Starting May 10, anyone 12 and older is eligible. See Vaccine expanded.

Restrictions in a nutshell:

From May 5 to 26, in all extended areas (incl. Slave Lake) the following restrictions apply:

  • Social gatherings – outdoor five people okay, but indoor prohibited.
  • Fitness – indoor out. Outdoor only with household members. Also, no performance activity.
  • Workplace transmission – any workplace, except work camps and essential and critical services, with transmission of three or more cases must close for 10 days.
  • Funerals and weddings – 10 people or fewer and no receptions.
  • Retail – 10 per cent of fire code plus staff.
  • Post-secondary and other schools – returned to at-home-learning.
  • Places of worship: only 15 people. Virtual services strongly recommended. Drive-in services allowed.
  • Hotels/motels: open but pools and recreation facilities must close.
  • Working from home: remains mandatory unless physical presence necessary to operate effectively.
  • Restaurants, bars, pubs, lounges and cafes: patios much close, but take-out and delivery are allowed.
  • Personal and wellness services: Hair salons, barbers, nail salons, estheticians, tattoos and piercing, must close.
  • Health, social and professional services: no change – still by appointment only.
    All other restrictions also apply. Non-extended areas also have new restrictions see alberta.ca.
Graphs made by Leader staff with statistics from alberta.ca.

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