Monday, August 2, 2021

Canada: Alta. doctor shocked that province lifting some COVID-19 measures

CTV News shows that ER physician Dr. Joe Vipond questions the decision by the Alberta government to lift some of its COVID-19 measures, calling it an 'experiment of how many people we can get sick.'

The COVID-19 Coronavirus virus pandemic in Alberta (Province of Canada) is part of an ongoing global pandemic of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), an infectious disease caused by severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2). The province of Alberta has the third-most cases of COVID-19 in Canada, behind only Ontario and Quebec.

Jason Kenney, the Premier of Alberta, working closely with the Emergency Management Cabinet Committee, followed the recommendations of Alberta's Chief Medical Officer of Health, Dr. Deena Hinshaw, in response to the "rapidly evolving global threat". A state of public health emergency was declared on March 17. Alberta's public health laboratory greatly increased tests for COVID-19, reaching 1,000 a day by March 8, and 3,000 a day by March 26. Hinshaw said that by March 20, "World-wide, Alberta has been conducting among the highest number of tests per capita." As of July 30, 2021, 4,866,898 tests have been conducted in Alberta. On June 12, the entire province of Alberta moved to Stage 2 of the government's economic relaunch plan.

The peak of the 1st virus wave was reached on April 30, 2020, when the number of active cases of COVID-19 in the province reached 3022. By October 19, 2020, during the second wave, the number of active cases reached 3138. This began a series of new record high case numbers in Alberta, peaking on December 14, 2020 at 20,500 active cases. An attempt to lift restrictions after cases subsided in early-2021 was interrupted in March by a third wave, fuelled by variants of concern. This led to a rollback of the reopening process until the first vaccine dose was sufficiently distributed among residents. On July 1, Alberta lifted almost all remaining public health orders.

"Alberta" is really one of the 13 provinces and territories of Canada. It is part of Western Canada and is one of the 3 prairie provinces. English is the official language of the province. In 2016, 76.0% of Albertans were anglophone, 1.8% were francophone and 22.2% were allophone.

Alberta is bordered by British Columbia to the west, Saskatchewan to the east, the Northwest Territories (NWT) to the north, and the USA state of Montana to the south. It is one of the only 2 landlocked provinces in Canada. The eastern part of the province is occupied by the Great Plains, while the western part borders the Rocky Mountains. The province has a predominantly continental climate but experiences quick temperature changes due to air aridity. Seasonal temperature swings are less pronounced in western Alberta due to occasional chinook winds.

Alberta is the 6th largest province by area, being approximately 660,000 square kilometers, and the 4th most populous, being home to 4,067,175 people. Alberta's capital is Edmonton, while Calgary is its largest city. The 2 are Alberta's largest census metropolitan areas (CMAs) and both exceed 1 million people. More than half of Albertans live in either Edmonton or Calgary, which contributes to continuing the rivalry between the 2 cities. The province also has one other CMA, Lethbridge, and 15 census agglomerations.

"Chinook Winds" or simply Chinooks, are föhn winds in the interior West of North America, where the Canadian Prairies and Great Plains meet various mountain ranges, although the original usage is in reference to wet, warm coastal winds in the Pacific Northwest.

A föhn, also spelled foehn, is a type of dry, warm, down-slope wind that occurs in the lee (downwind side) of a mountain range.

The Blackfoot people term this Chinook wind "Snow Eater"; however, the more commonly used term "Chinook" originates from the language spoken by the eponymous people in the region where the usage was first derived (the Chinook people lived near the ocean, along the lower Columbia River). The reference to a wind or weather system, simply "a Chinook", originally meant a certain warming wind from the ocean into the interior regions of the Pacific Northwest of the USA.

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