Edmonton – Amid the influx of COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations, Alberta is bringing back the health measures it ditched just two months ago as well as offering a $100 vaccination incentive.
Starting Saturday, masks will be mandatory across the province in all public places and indoor workplaces. Schools will continue to set their own policy.
In addition, restaurant companies will be required to finish serving alcoholic beverages at 10 p.m.
Alberta will pay unvaccinated residents $100 for a COVID-19 shot.
Friday’s announcement came on the heels of a plea from the prime minister for 30 percent of eligible Albertans who are not immunized to “do the right thing”.
“Their choices are now jeopardizing our healthcare system…it is urgent that you protect yourself, our hospitals and our entire community by taking advantage of this miracle of modern medicine as soon as possible.”
This is a breaking news story. More to come… Our original story is as follows:
Prime Minister Jason Kenny, Minister of Health Tyler Chandro and Medical Director of Health Dr Dina Henshaw will provide an update on COVID-19 at 11:30 a.m.
The press conference will be the first time in weeks that top decision makers will receive questions directly from the press.
Dr. Verna Yu, Executive Director of Alberta Health Services, will also be present.
Watch the event live on TV and CTVNewsEdmonton.ca.
The Cabinet Committee on COVID-19 met Thursday and Prime Minister Jason Kenney told Albertans the day before to expect an announcement from his government this week. His communications staff told the media the same thing.
It has been more than three weeks since the Prime Minister stood before the journalists. Kenny was out of business for part of August.
In his absence, other ministers and Alberta’s chief medical officer of health have denied that the government is avoiding speaking to the press, citing daily COVID-19 updates made on the province’s website.
However, CTV News requested interviews with all 25 ministers and assistant ministers in the Kenyan government and received responses from four press secretaries, none of whom agreed to be interviewed.
On Thursday, the province reported 1,339 new COVID-19 cases and 487 hospitalizations.
Since the county’s chief medical officer of health spoke on August 13, the COVID-19 situation in the county has worsened dramatically.
On August 13, the seven-day average of new cases was 420 per day, rising to 1,118 as of yesterday.
Serious outcomes also became more frequent during this time frame: The number of hospitalized COVID-19 patients increased by 327, the number in intensive care units increased by 76, and 55 Albertans died.