49 cases of COVID-19 linked to Calgary wedding, 'aggressive' contact tracing underway
CALGARY -- Health officials are continuing to do "aggressive contact tracing" after 49 cases of COVID-19 were linked to a large wedding held in Calgary earlier this month.
Alberta Chief Medical Officer of Health Dr. Deena Hinshaw said during Tuesday's regular update that 49 of 63 people who attended the event have since been diagnosed with COVID-19.
"We cannot comment on specifics about individual cases due to patient confidentiality," said Tom McMillan, assistant director of communications for Alberta Health.
"There are currently 49 cases linked to this outbreak, all of which are active. Aggressive contact tracing is underway to identify anyone who may have been exposed and ensure they are isolating and tested.
"AHS is working closely with the organizers and those who have contracted the virus. Anyone at risk is being contacted directly by AHS."
The wedding was attended by a number of people from different households.
"At this time, it is not clear what specific factors led to the level of exposure that has occurred. The public health investigation is currently underway," said McMillan.
There have been several outbreaks reported in Calgary in recent weeks linked to social gatherings.
And officials are reminding Albertans that gatherings like wedding receptions or informal get-togethers at homes or community spaces carry an increased risk of transmission.
"It is important that nobody attend if they are feeling ill with even mild symptoms, or if they are awaiting test results," said McMillan.
"It is also important that organizers of social gatherings do everything possible to comply with the public health guidance in place, including ensuring that there is enough space for physical distancing between cohorts, follow gathering size restrictions, and avoiding sharing food and utensils."
There are a number of outbreaks ongoing in the city, the most serious being at Foothills hospital where 47 patients and 39 staff members have tested positive, and 12 deaths have been linked to the virus.
On Monday, the province reported Alberta added 898 cases of the coronavirus over the weekend, a tally that increased the province’s confirmed infection count to 3,138 – a pandemic high.
Dr. Deena Hinshaw, Alberta's Chief Medical Officer of Health, is scheduled to give a regular update on COVID-19 in the province at 3:30 p.m. Tuesday.