Coronavirus: Alberta increasing outdoor gathering limit to 200

Coronavirus: Alberta increasing outdoor gathering limit to 200
In a release Tuesday, the province announced the change, noting it will better accommodate events such as festivals, firework displays, rodeos, sporting events and outdoor performances.

All public health measures, including physical distancing, remain in place and officials noted that any seated events must also arrange seating to accommodate a two-metre-distance between guests.

A gathering limit was first introduced in mid-March after a provincial state of emergency was declared, and health officials noted that limiting the number of people in a confined area can help slow the spread of the virus.

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The gathering limit for outdoor areas has increased several times over the last three months. The province noted that’s because research suggests the virus has lower transmission rates when outside.

However, officials warned that any type of large gathering will increase the risk of spread.

With the increase, officials also noted that Alberta Health will continue to monitor case numbers and may need to adjust the limit as necessary.

On Monday, Alberta confirmed 71 new cases, bringing the provincial total of active cases to 559.

Of those 41 people are in hospital and nine are in intensive care units. The province’s COVID-19 death toll sits at 154.

As for Tuesday’s numbers, Alberta’s chief medical officer of health Dr. Deena Hinshaw will provide an update for new cases in the province Tuesday afternoon at 3:30 p.m.
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