While the County of Grande Prairie isn’t currently looking at mandating any COVID-19 mitigation methods like mask wearing, Reeve Leanne Beaupre is urging residents who may be vaccine hesitant to give it another look.
As of August 26th, 185 active cases of the virus are being reported in the County of Grande Prairie. Just six weeks ago the region was hovering around zero. Beaupre says she understands there is division when it comes to vaccinations, but she believes it’s something at least worth another discussion.
“It’s very much a personal choice, but it’s also very much a personal responsibility, and, with rising cases, I think it’s really important people really take the time to analyze why they’re not getting vaccinated.”
Beaupre says the data publicly released by Alberta Health Services, which shows upwards of 88 per cent of hospitalizations and ICU patients across Alberta represented by unvaccinated members of the population, could be a potential turning point for people who are on the fence.
“I would hope that would relate to a lot of the non-vaccinated people, that if you’re considering it, now’s the time to get it done.”
Despite several lengthy business closures during the first and second wave of COVID-19, Beaupre says, at the moment, councillors and the municipality are not looking at re-adding or strengthening any COVID-19 health and safety protocols.
“Typically, we take our lead from the Chief Medical Officer [of Health], and at this time, there hasn’t been any discussion about increased measures based on a fourth wave,” she adds.
Since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, the County of Grande Prairie has reported 1,670 COVID-19 cases and five virus-related deaths.