Listen Live
HomeNewsNew health measures, expanded booster program announced in Alberta

New health measures, expanded booster program announced in Alberta

New health measures are taking effect Christmas Eve as Alberta faces the rapid spread of the COVID-19 Omicron variant. The new restrictions, which take effect at 12:01 am on Friday, focus on avoiding super-spreader events and activities where there is a high risk of transmission.

For venues in the Restrictions Exemption Program – 50 per cent capacity limit at venues that seat more than 1,000 people.
For venues with capacity of between 500 and 1,000 occupants, 500 is the limit. No food or drink consumption in seated audience settings or during intermissions in the above-mentioned venues. There is no impact on venues under 500.

Maximum table capacity of 10 people in restaurants, pubs and bars. No mingling between tables. No interactive activities at restaurants, pubs and bars (e.g., dancing, darts and billiards). Restaurants, pubs and bars must stop liquor service at 11 p.m., and close at 12:30 a.m. The province says restrictions continue for both indoor and outdoor social gatherings, weddings, funerals, places of worship and businesses, adding Albertans should also refrain from workplace social gatherings.

Albertans are also being asked to reduce social contacts by 50-percent during the holiday season.

- Advertisement -

The province’s COVID-19 positivity rate has risen to 10.8 percent just two weeks after it gradually declined to 3.5 percent.

Meanwhile, all Albertans 18 and older, who received their second COVID-19 vaccine at least five months ago, can now book a booster shot.

The province says while the severity of the Omicron variant is not yet known, expanded availability of third doses will help provide increased protection and prevent community spread.

“Third doses are especially important to protect against the Omicron variant. Vaccines continue to be our best protection against COVID-19 and with the highly transmissible Omicron variant, I encourage all eligible Albertans to book their first, second and third doses as soon as they are eligible,” says Chief Medical Officer of Health Dr. Deena Hinshaw.

Albertans are also being encouraged to take the first mRNA vaccine available to them for that third dose though the 18 to 29 age group will be getting the Pfizer variety due to a slightly increased risk of myocarditis inflammation of the heart muscle) in younger people from Moderna.

Health officials are reiterating that both the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines offer a high level of protection against COVID-19 particularly against severe outcomes.

Premier Kenney also announced Tuesday that the province would be directly purchasing up to 10 million rapid tests for expected delivery in January.

- Advertisment -
- Advertisment -
- Advertisement -

Continue Reading