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Alberta reports 1,351 new COVID-19 infections Wednesday, identifies 575 variant cases

Alberta reported an additional 1,351 infections of COVID-19 on Wednesday, bringing the province’s total of active cases to 11,464.

Health officials have also identified 575 new cases of variants of concern, accounting for 43.2 per cent of currently active cases.

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A total of 333 people were being treated in hospitals across Alberta, with 79 of them being cared for in ICUs.

One additional death was reported by Alberta Health on Wednesday: a man in his 60s living in the North zone. The case did not have any comorbidities. Two-thousand-two Albertans have died from COVID-19 since last year.

A total of 755,831 doses of vaccine had been administered to Albertans as of Wednesday, with 133,401 people being fully immunized with two shots.

On Tuesday, the province announced the return to Step 1 of the four-step relaunch plan in response to rapidly increasing case counts and variants of concern. Daily case totals had increased by 27 per cent within a week.

Click to play video: Alberta infectious disease specialist responds to latest COVID-19 restrictions

As of midnight Wednesday, retail stores had their capacity reduced to 15 per cent, down from 25 per cent, and group fitness was banned.

Alberta’s restaurants and bars will also be closed to indoor dining as of noon on Friday, however, outdoor patios are allowed to operate.

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Of the active cases in Alberta on Wednesday, 5,408 were in the Calgary zone, 2,640 were in the Edmonton zone, 865 were in the South zone, the North zone had 1,522 cases, the Central Zone reported 934 cases and 95 cases were not linked to a particular zone.

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