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Alberta orders cancellation of all large events due to COVID-19

Last Updated Mar 13, 2020 at 7:43 am MST

Alberta's Chief Medical Officer Dr. Deena Hinshaw (PHOTO: Darcy Ropchan, CityNews)

EDMONTON (660 NEWS) — The Alberta government is ordering the cancellation of all public events involving more than 250 people as a measure to manage the coronavirus outbreak.

Schools and daycares can remain open, but schools are urged to avoid large gatherings.

The cancellations do not apply to places of worship, shopping malls, grocery stores or airports.

“These are extraordinary circumstances, and our public health response must rise to the challenge we face,” said Dr. Hinshaw. “”We are taking this step based on the ongoing developments outside Alberta, both in the actions being taken by other jurisdictions, as well as the increasing spread of cases around the world.”

Albertans are also advised against travelling outside of the country for the time being. Anyone who returns from a trip is told to self-isolate for 14 days.

Four new cases in the Calgary zone have also been confirmed in the last 24 hours including a young child.

“This child returned with their family from a vacation in Florida and developed mild symptoms once back home in Alberta. They attended a local daycare last week while experiencing mild symptoms. This child tested positive yesterday and is now recovering in isolation at home.”

Dr. HInshaw says Alberta Health will update its website regularly as more people are tested for the virus and more positive results are expected.

“Rest assured that Alberta continues to work closely with our health partners to closely monitor developments around the world,” said Dr. Hinshaw. “If we need to implement additional public health measures, we will do so.”