Alberta’s chief medical officer of health, Dr. Deena Hinshaw, provides an update, in Edmonton on Monday, March 30, 2020, on COVID-19 and the ongoing work to protect public health. (photography by Chris Schwarz/Government of Alberta) Alberta’s chief medical officer of health, Dr. Deena Hinshaw, says the province currently has the fewest number of confirmed active COVID-19 cases since March 30. Government of Alberta file photo

Alberta gov’t developing guidelines to potentially host NHL games in Edmonton

Twenty-five new cases confirmed Wednesday

As the number of confirmed active COVID-19 cases in Alberta continues to fall, the province is developing guidelines that would allow Edmonton to serve as a hub city for the Stanley Cup playoffs.

“These guidelines have been developed to support players, NHL staff, media personnel and Albertans to stay healthy and safe during such an event,” Hinshaw said Wednesday during a provincial update.

“We remain open to working with the NHL to address any concerns before these guidelines are finalized, whether that relates to quarantine requirements or any other matter.”

Safety must be the top priority, Hinshaw said.

“In order to make this happen, all levels of government and the NHL will have to collaborate and find creative solutions,” Hinshaw said, adding she has been in touch with her colleagues at the federal level to discuss special quarantine measures to ensure public safety and safe practices in games for NHL teams.

So-called cohort quarantines would require groups to stay together over a period of time. These groups, potentially made up of one or two teams, would not be able to interact with others outside of the group.

“They would be effectively sealed off from the rest of the community and there would be no interaction between them and the community,” said Hinshaw.

Games will not be played until later in the summer, even if Edmonton is chosen as a payoff hub.

Alberta currently has the fewest number of confirmed active COVID-19 cases since March 30, said Hinshaw.

Of the total confirmed 6,926 cases, 679 are active, 6,106 have recovered and 141 have died.

“Of course, we must not forget that this virus is still impacting many people across the province,” Hinshaw said.

Twenty-five new cases and two new deaths throughout the province were confirmed at the press conference.

Forty-three people are currently in hospital due to the virus. Four individuals have been admitted into intensive care units.

The City of Red Deer remains at one active and 36 recovered cases, while Red Deer County has one active and 15 recovered.

The City of Lacombe, Clearwater County and Stettler County have two recovered cases. Lacombe County and Ponoka County both have three recovered cases.

Hinshaw said Alberta is investigating its first possible case of Multisystem Inflammatory Syndrome in Children, which has been reported in other jurisdictions around the world.

Reported cases have been found in children and adolescents who were recently infected by COVID-19. The syndrome involves inflammation of multiple organs, including the heart, kidneys, blood vessels and nervous system.

This condition appears to be rare and treatable, Hinshaw added.

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