Premier Jason Kenney's Address to Albertans
Tuesday, April 7 at 6 pm.
Tune in live on Global, Bell, Rogers and CBC stations.
The COVID-19 outbreak was declared a global pandemic by World Health Organization (WHO). Alberta declared a public health emergency.
Confirmed cases: 1,348 in Alberta, 15,920 in Canada.
- Complete information for Albertans
- Support the Alberta Bits and Pieces Program
- Updates from the Chief Medical Officer
Last updated: April 6 at 3:30 pm
Public health orders
To protect the health and safety of Albertans, public health orders can be legally-enforced and fines issued for violations.
- Mandatory 14-day self-isolation for returning international travellers or close contacts of people with confirmed COVID-19.
- Mandatory 10-day self-isolation for people with symptoms that are not related to a pre-existing illness or health condition: cough, fever, shortness of breath, runny nose or sore throat.
- Restrictions on mass gathering and businesses are now legally enforceable and subject to fines.
- New operational protocols, including limited visitation, are now enforceable for all nursing homes, designated supportive living and long-term care facilities, seniors lodges and any facility in which residential addiction treatment services are offered under the Mental Health Services Protection Act.
- New outbreak standards are now in place for operators, managers and staff at all congregate health settings, including all hospitals, nursing homes, designated supportive living and long-term care facilities, seniors lodges and facilities in which residential addiction treatment services are offered.
Cases in Alberta
|Location||Confirmed cases||Deaths||Recovered cases|
|In Alberta||1,348 (98 new cases)||24||361|
Alberta implemented new mandatory isolation requirements and restrictions on gatherings and businesses to help prevent the spread.
Mandatory isolation requirements
Isolation can help prevent the spread of COVID-19.
Under public health order, you are legally required to isolate for:
- 14 days if you returned from international travel or are a close contact of a person with COVID-19, plus an additional 10 days from the onset of symptoms, should they occur
- 10 days if you have a cough, fever, shortness of breath, runny nose, or sore throat that is not related to a pre-existing illness or health condition
Last updated: April 3 at 4 pm
Gathering and business restrictions
Albertans are prohibited from gathering in groups of more than 15 people in both indoor and outdoor spaces:
- All gatherings, indoor or outdoor, over 15 people must be cancelled.
- Gatherings in outdoor public spaces are limited to groups of 15 people in one location and must observe 2-metre physical distancing requirements.
- In outdoor spaces where individuals or families are walking, people must observe 2-metre physical distancing requirements.
- Access to all public recreation facilities, private entertainment facilities, bars and nightclubs is prohibited.
- All dine-in services are prohibited.
- Retail, clothing and gaming stores are prohibited from offering services in facilities accessible by the public.
- Visitation to long-term care and other continuing care facilities is limited to essential visitors only
- Close contact personal services are restricted from providing services to Albertans.
Last updated: April 1 at 10 am
Help prevent the spread
All Albertans have a responsibility to help prevent the spread. Take steps to protect yourself and others:
- practice physical distancing
- practice good hygiene: wash hands often for at least 20 seconds, cover coughs and sneezes, and avoid touching face
- monitor for symptoms: cough, fever, shortness of breath, runny nose or sore throat
- self-isolate for the legally-required 10 days if you have any symptoms that are not related to a pre-existing illness or medical condition
- take the COVID-19 self-assessment if you're concerned about your health
- health care workers should follow guidelines for personal protective equipment (PDF, 69 KB) when caring for individuals who may have COVID-19. Alberta’s Chief Medical Officer of Health has endorsed these guidelines (PDF, 109 KB).
Last updated: March 27 at 8:00 pm
- include N95 masks and surgical or procedure masks
- must be kept for health care workers and people providing direct care to COVID-19 patients
- should only be used in addition to other protective steps
- include cloth or homemade masks
- are not proven to protect the person wearing it, but may help protect others
- cover your mouth and nose to prevent respiratory droplets from contaminating other people or surfaces
- must be worn and taken on/off properly as the outside can become contaminated
Last updated: April 6 at 5 pm
COVID-19 symptoms are similar to influenza and other respiratory illnesses.
- Common symptoms can be mild: cough, fever, shortness of breath, runny nose or sore throat
- Symptom of serious illness: difficulty breathing or pneumonia
If you have symptoms:
- legally-required to isolate for at least 10 days, or until symptoms resolve, whichever is longer
- take the COVID-19 self-assessment
- call Health Link 811 for further instructions if directed by the self-assessment tool
- do not go to an ER or clinic – if you need immediate medical attention, call 911 and inform them you may have COVID-19
Last updated: April 3 at 3:30 pm
Alberta has one of the highest testing rates in the world so we can trace the spread of the virus, determine how our public health measures are working, and diagnose and treat people at greatest risk, including:
- hospitalized patients with respiratory illness
- people living in continuing care facilities, group homes or similar congregate settings
- people 65 or older with COVID-19 symptoms
- symptomatic front-line health care workers, law enforcement, first responders, correctional staff, group home and shelter workers
Last updated: April 6 at 8pm
COVID-19 can cause serious respiratory illness. Because it is a new virus with no treatment or immunity in people, it is critical for people with any symptoms to stay home and self-isolate to keep it from spreading.
Most people – about 80% – recover without needing special treatment. However, it can cause serious illness in some, and there is a risk of death in severe cases.
While we are still learning about COVID-19, serious illness appears to develop more often in people who are older or have pre-existing conditions, such as high blood pressure, heart disease, lung disease, cancer or diabetes.
How it spreads
COVID-19 is transmitted through person-to-person spread by:
- larger droplets, like from a cough or sneeze
- touching contaminated objects or surfaces and then touching your eyes, nose or mouth
COVID-19 is not airborne and cannot spread through the air over long distances or times, like the measles.
Studies suggest that the virus generally only survives for a few hours on a surface, though it may be possible for it to survive several days under ideal conditions.
Last updated: March 15 at 5 pm
There is no vaccine or proven treatment for COVID-19 at this time. The virus is new and different, so needs its own vaccine – which researchers around the world are now working to develop.
Supportive care is being used to treat patients with COVID-19 and some medications are being tested to see if they can help severely ill patients.
Last updated: April 3 at 3:30 pm
COVID-19 vs. Influenza
Coronaviruses are a large family of viruses. Some cause respiratory illness in people, ranging from mild common colds to severe illnesses.
Novel coronaviruses, like COVID-19, are new strains of the virus that have not been previously identified in humans. This means people have no immunity against it, and it has no vaccine or proven treatment.
COVID-19 vs. Flu
In some ways, COVID-19 is similar to influenza (also known as the flu), but there are also key differences.
- Both cause respiratory disease.
- Both are spread by small droplets from the nose and mouth.
- Neither is spread through the air over long distances and times, unlike the measles.
- COVID-19 does not have a specific vaccine or treatment available.
- COVID-19 does not appear to transmit as efficiently as influenza:
- only people with symptoms seem to be spreading the disease, but symptoms may be very mild, so transmission is possible even if the person is feeling well
- controlling its spread is possible when people with symptoms are isolated
- COVID-19 causes severe disease and mortality in more cases than the flu. On average:
- COVID-19 has resulted in 1 to 2 deaths per 100 cases
- Flu results in 1 death in every 1,000 flu cases
Because COVID-19 can cause serious illness, it is critical to keep it from spreading by having people with symptoms follow mandatory isolation requirements.
Last updated: April 3 at 3:30 pm
Mental health and addiction
The COVID-19 pandemic can have a significant impact on mental health.
Online resources are available if you need advice on handling stressful situations or ways to talk to children.
- Mental health and coping with COVID-19 (CDC)
- Talking with children about COVID-19 (CDC)
- Help in Tough Times (AHS)
If you need to talk, call the 24-hour help lines:
If you or someone you know is at risk of family violence, help is available.
Call our 24-hour Family Violence Info Line at 310-1818 to get anonymous help in over 170 languages.
Child neglect and abuse
We’re receiving two types of complaints related to consumer exploitation resulting from COVID-19:
- retail outlet stores raising prices for high-demand products (i.e. toilet paper, hand sanitizer)
- private individuals purchasing mass quantities of supplies and reselling them at an inflated premium
The Consumer Protection Act prevents suppliers from grossly raising prices with no explanation beyond what is reasonable for goods that are readily available.
Unlike commercial sales, the act does not explicitly cover private sales. We urge all Albertans to act with consideration and caution and to find ways to help support each other in this time.
File a consumer complaint
If you see prices for products or services in Alberta skyrocket because of COVID-19, you can report it through our Report-a-Ripoff submission form or by calling 1-877-427-4088.
Cyber security incidents involving malware and fraudulent activities, including identity theft, are being reported across Alberta in the wake of COVID-19.
- Anyone who receives a call asking for credit card information should hang up immediately and call the non-emergency line for local law enforcement.
- Albertans are encouraged to continue to exercise caution when clicking on links or providing personal information to people and organizations that request that information, unsolicited.
Info for Albertans
Info for seniors and other vulnerable groups
Individuals over 60 years of age and those with pre-existing health conditions are most at risk of severe symptoms from COVID-19.
Continuing care, long-term care and seniors lodges
To prevent the spread of respiratory viruses, including COVID-19, among seniors and vulnerable groups:
- Visitors to any continuing care, long-term care and seniors lodges in Alberta are limited to essential visitors only.
- Each essential visitor must be verified and undergo a health screening prior to entering the facility. This includes a temperature check and a questionnaire.
- Facilities must have security staff or a greeter to conduct this screening and verify the visitor is designated.
- Exceptions to these essential visitor rules will be made for family members to visit a person who is dying, so long as only one visitor enters the facility at a time.
See guidance on visitation restrictions for continuing care, long-term care and seniors lodges (PDF, 554 KB) for more information.
Updated operational standards for facilities
Updated requirements have been established for licensed supportive living, long-term care facilities and service providers licensed under the Mental Health Services Protection Act.
These expectations are for all operators or service providers, residents, staff, as well as any essential visitors of these facilities.
See Updated Operational Standards (PDF, 620 KB) for more information.
New outbreak control standards for facilities
A new public health order establishes rules for operators, managers and staff at congregate health settings on how to respond to an outbreak of COVID-19. These standards and directions apply to all hospitals, nursing homes, designated supportive living and long-term care facilities, seniors lodges and facilities in which residential addiction treatment services are offered.
Support for seniors at home
Seniors can contact 211 if they need help finding resources in their community. 211 is a comprehensive referral system accessible to all Albertans.
Call or text 2-1-1, or visit ab.211.ca.
- Record of decision 03-2020 by the Chief Medical Officer: limits visitation to facilities to essential vistors (March 20, 2020)
- Record of decision 06-2020 by the Chief Medical Officer: updated protocols for facilities (March 25, 2020)
Last updated: April 2 at 4:30 pm
Info for renters and landlords
New protections are in place for residential and mobile homes site tenants facing financial hardship due to COVID-19:
- Tenants cannot be evicted for non-payment of rent and/or utilities before May 1, 2020.
- Rents on residential properties or mobile home sites will not increase while Alberta’s State of Public Health Emergency remains in effect.
- Late fees cannot be applied to late rent payments until June 30 and cannot be collected retroactively for this time.
- Landlords and tenants need to work together to develop payment plans while COVID-19 is being managed.
- Landlords can still file applications and receive orders for possession if the reason for the eviction is unrelated to rent and/or utility payments, or if a tenant refused to negotiate or comply with a payment plan.
Info for travellers and airline passengers
An official global travel advisory is in effect. Albertans should follow all travel recommendations.
- Avoid all non-essential travel outside Canada and all cruise ship travel.
- Canadians abroad should return home immediately.
- Returning travellers must:
- follow mandatory 14-day isolation requirements and monitor for symptoms
- check recent domestic and international flights for confirmed cases (info updated as cases are confirmed)
Last updated: April 3 at 3:30pm
Info for daycares
- Licensed child care facilities are closed to the general public at this time.
- Select licensed child care centres have reopened to provide child care for essential service workers.
- Home-based child care with 6 or fewer children (not including the caregiver’s own children) can continue operating as long as safety measures are in place.
Info for schools
- All classes in K to 12 schools are cancelled until further notice
- All Grade 6 and 9 provincial achievement tests and Grade 12 diploma exams are cancelled
- School authorities will offer at-home learning opportunities for all kindergarten to Grade 12 students
- Each student will get final grades and a report card appropriate to their grade level
- High school students on track to receive 100 or more credits will still be eligible to graduate
- Record of decision by the chief medical officer of health (March 16, 2020)
Last updated: March 20 at 7pm
Info for post-secondary institutions
Effective immediately, in-person classes at post-secondary institutions are cancelled until further notice. Campuses remain open.
We are working with post-secondary institutions to ensure that these extraordinary circumstances do not prevent students from being eligible for admission to post-secondary studies for the upcoming school year.
- Record of decision by the chief medical officer of health (March 16, 2020)
Last updated: March 15 at 5 pm
Info for homeless shelters and service providers
On March 30, the Chief Medical Officer of Health recognized operators of shelters and temporary or transitional housing facilities provide an essential service in Alberta during this time of emergency.
- These facilities are exempt from the mass gathering public health order and may provide shelter to more than 15 people – as long as risk mitigation strategies are followed, including maintaining a minimum of 2 metres distance from one another. Read the exemption letter for more information.
- All non-essential gatherings inside or outside these facilities must include no more than 15 people.
We are working with community-based organizations, homeless shelters and women’s shelters to:
- update pandemic plans with guidelines and information specific to COVID-19
- expand shelter capacity and help current service providers to maintain physical distancing practices by finding additional space to house people
$30 million has been committed to adult homeless shelters and women’s emergency shelters to support their COVID-19 response.
Last updated: March 31 at 3 pm
Info for charities and not-for-profit organizations
$30 million has been committed to charities, non-profits and civil society organizations to support their COVID-19 response. More information on emergency funding for charities and not-for-profit organizations.
Last updated: March 30 at 11:00 am
Info for volunteers
Volunteers play many important roles in communities across our province.
Volunteers and volunteer organizations must follow all necessary precautions to prevent the spread of COVID-19 to protect themselves and those they help.
- Volunteer organizations may have more than 15 volunteers and/or employees in one location.
- Volunteers and employees may work together at distances of less than 2 metres, where unavoidable.
- Volunteer organizations must take actions to prevent the transmission of infection among employees, volunteers and the people they are helping.
- Proper hygiene and cleaning practices must be followed within the volunteer organization.
- Any employee or volunteer with symptoms, including cough, fever, shortness of breath, runny nose, or sore throat, is required by law to isolate and may not participate in volunteer or workplace activities.
Information for non-health care volunteers (PDF, 43 KB)
Info for faith-based organizations
We recognize Albertans need a place to worship together in their various religious traditions, in a way that doesn’t put people at risk of spreading or contracting COVID-19.
Gatherings with over 15 people are strictly prohibited, but faith-based organizations can find other ways to worship, including:
- live streaming activities instead of in-person events, whenever possible
- gatherings with fewer than 15 people can happen as long as proper mitigation measures are followed:
- people who are sick with a fever or cough must not attend
- anyone at high risk of severe disease should not attend
- practice physical distancing and maintain 2 metres between each person
- stagger arrivals and departures to maintain physical distancing
- increase access to handwashing stations or alcohol-based sanitizer
- frequently clean surfaces that are touched often
- remove activities that require physical contact between participants
More information can be found in the guidance document for faith-based organizations (PDF, 194 KB)
Info for municipalities
We are providing advice based on current evidence and public health recommendations from the Public Health Agency of Canada.
Helping local organizations plan for an outbreak
- Business continuity planning (PDF, 319 KB) is essential in preparing critical operations for potential interruptions.
- Alberta Emergency Management Agency field officers are available to support municipalities, First Nations and Metis Settlements with their emergency management and business continuity planning.
Supporting the health system
- refer anyone with health-related concerns to Health Link 811 and promote it as a reliable source of information
- promote the Respiratory Viruses and the Workplace guide for workplaces
- review business continuity plans to ensure disruptions from staff shortages have been considered, especially for critical operations
- stay informed about the current situation in Alberta via this web page
- OHS: Respiratory viruses and the workplace
- Business continuity planning (PDF, 319 KB)
- Help Prevent the Spread posters
Last updated: March 15 at 5 pm
Support the Alberta Bits and Pieces Program
Submit your offers of products or services to the Alberta Bits and Pieces Program if you're interested in supporting the COVID-19 response.
If there is a requirement for your product or service, you will be contacted by a representative of the Government of Alberta.
The program is named after the “bits and pieces program” established by Canada’s Minister of Munitions and Supply during the Second World War, C. D. Howe. The program coordinated innovative production and procurement efforts from across the Canadian economy to support the war effort.
Alberta government response
Alberta government actions
- March 27 – Alberta announced new restrictions on mass gatherings and services, protection for residential renters, and tax relief for hotels and other lodging providers.
- March 25 – Alberta announced new measures to help stop the spread of COVID-19, including:
- making self-isolation mandatory for returning travellers, close contacts of COVID-19 cases and people experiencing COVID-19 symptoms
- giving law enforcement agencies the full authority to enforce public health orders and issue fines
- March 23 – Alberta announced new support for Albertans, employers and physicians, including:
- March 21 – Alberta amended the Emergency Management Act to allow provincial and local states of emergencies to exist at the same time, helping communities
- March 20 – Alberta announced new measures to address the economic downturn, including:
- March 18 – Alberta announced immediate financial assistance for Albertans affected by COVID-19 pandemic, including:
- March 17 – Alberta declared a state of emergency under the Public Health Act to empower authorities to more effectively respond to public health concerns.
- March 17 – $60 million in one-time emergency funding was provided to civil society organizations, adult homeless shelters, and women’s emergency shelters to:
- enable physical distancing and sanitization of common areas
- provide supports and services to at-risk seniors, people with disabilities and families facing homelessness, poverty and social isolation
- March 15 – $500 million in additional health funding was commitment to the COVID-19 response to ensure front-line health professionals have the tools they need for testing, surveillance and treatment of patients.
Public health actions
Alberta’s public health officials are carefully monitoring the situation in Canada and around the world, and are ready to respond. They are:
- working closely with federal, provincial and territorial partners to share information and assess potential health risks
- ensuring our health system is responding effectively
- ensuring front-line health professionals have information about the virus so they can:
- take recommended actions
- promptly report potential cases to public health officials
- updating self-isolation and self-monitoring recommendations for returning travellers as required
- tracing all close contacts of confirmed cases, testing and isolating those who are symptomatic, and asking even those who feel well to self-isolate for 14 days after their last contact with the case
- granting law enforcement the authority to enforce public health orders and issue fines to anyone violating a public health order
Last updated: March 25 at 3:30 pm
Government service changes
Temporary office closures
Some Alberta government office locations have temporarily closed to the public.
To find out how to access affected government services, visit the program's web page or call Alberta Connect at 310-4455 from 8 am to 8 pm, 7 days a week.
Corporate Registry changes
Corporate Registry changes
In keeping with public gathering restrictions, deadlines are suspended for corporations, partnerships, cooperatives and non-profit organizations to hold annual general meetings and file their annual returns
These groups will remain active in Alberta, and will not have their corporations, partnerships, cooperatives or non-profit organizations dissolved due to failing to file annual returns.
Road tests, driver's licence, ID cards and vehicle registration changes
Upcoming expiry dates for Alberta drivers’ licences, identification cards, vehicle registrations, other permits and certificates are being extended until May 15.
Effective immediately, Transportation has extended the timeline to 90 days for most drivers requiring a medical evaluation to provide their completed medical form when applying for or renewing their licence.
This will reduce the current strain on the healthcare system. Medically, high risk drivers will still be required to present their medical evaluation at the time of their application or renewal.
See Medical conditions and driving for more information.
Vehicle registrations expire on an assigned month based on the registrant’s surname or a company name.
- Albertans and companies with registrations expiring in March and April (including those whose last names begin with B, D, G, Y) will now have until May 15, 2020 to renew their vehicle registrations.
Driver's licences and ID cards
Drivers' licences and ID cards expire on the holder’s birthday in the year noted on the card.
- Albertans who have birthdays from March 17 through May 14 and whose cards expire this year, now have until May 15, 2020 to renew.
- Expiry dates can be found on your card and Albertans with birthdays from March 17 through May 14 are encouraged to confirm whether they need to renew this year.
Effective March 20, Alberta commercial and passenger road tests have been suspended for at least 4 weeks. Road tests will resume when it is safe to do so.
- Albertans who have a road test scheduled will be able to rebook online as of April 17, 2020 for a test on April 20, 2020 or later, at no additional charge.
- We are working with the commercial carrier industry to determine whether there are any urgent driving tests that need to be held in order to support maintaining delivery of essential goods, such as food and medical supplies.
Court and justice services changes
The Alberta Court of Queen’s Bench, the Provincial Court of Alberta and the Alberta Court of Appeal are limiting services to essential and urgent functions.
Alberta Court of Queen’s Bench
There are changes at the court because of COVID-19. Read more at Alberta Court of Queen’s Bench information.
Provincial Court of Alberta
There are changes at the court because of COVID-19. Read more at Provincial Court of Alberta information.
Alberta Court of Appeal
There are changes at the court because of COVID-19. Read more at Alberta Court of Appeal information.
Daily updates from Dr. Deena Hinshaw, Alberta's Chief Medical Officer of Health.
Protecting families and the economy
- COVID-19 Information Posters
- Alberta Health Services (AHS) COVID-19 updates
- Alberta COVID-19 information sheets (PDF): English | French | Arabic | Spanish | Vietnamese | Traditional Chinese | Simplified Chinese | Punjabi | Somali | Hindi | Korean | Urdu
- Government of Canada COVID-19 updates: English | Simplified Chinese | French
- World Health Organization COVID-19 updates
- Update 24: COVID-19 pandemic in Alberta (April 6)
- Update 23: COVID-19 pandemic in Alberta (April 5)
- Update 22: COVID-19 pandemic in Alberta (April 4)
- Update 21: COVID-19 pandemic in Alberta (April 3)
- Update 20: COVID-19 pandemic in Alberta (April 2)
- Update 19: COVID-19 pandemic in Alberta (April 1)
- Update 18: COVID-19 pandemic in Alberta (March 31)
- Update 17: COVID-19 pandemic in Alberta (March 30)
- Update 16: COVID-19 pandemic in Alberta (March 29)
- Update 15: COVID-19 pandemic in Alberta (March 28)
- Update 14: COVID-19 pandemic in Alberta (March 27)
- Update 13: COVID-19 pandemic in Alberta (March 26)
- Update 12: COVID-19 pandemic in Alberta (March 25)
- Update 11: COVID-19 pandemic in Alberta (March 24)
- Update 10: COVID-19 pandemic in Alberta (March 23)
- Update 9: COVID-19 pandemic in Alberta (March 22)
- Update 8: COVID-19 pandemic in Alberta (March 21)
- Update 7: COVID-19 pandemic in Alberta (March 20)
- Update 6: COVID-19 pandemic in Alberta (March 19)
- Update 5: COVID-19 pandemic in Alberta (March 18)
- Update 4: COVID-19 pandemic in Alberta (March 17)
- Update 3: COVID-19 pandemic in Alberta (March 16)
- Update 2: COVID-19 pandemic in Alberta (March 15)
- Update 1: COVID-19 in Alberta (March 14)
- Relief for forest companies affected by COVID-19 (April 4, 2020)
- Alberta Bits and Pieces program highlights Albertan ingenuity, generosity (April 3, 2020)
- Hospital parking fees suspended during COVID-19 (April 2, 2020)
- Expanded child care for essential workers (April 1, 2020)
- Taking aditional measures to protect Albertans (March 31, 2020)
- Prioritizing emergency legislation (March 31, 2020)
- K-12 education funding temporarily adjusted to match cost (March 28, 2020)
- Supporting Indigenous safety through COVID-19 (March 28, 2020)
- Additional restrictions to stop spread of COVID-19 (March 27, 2020)
- Vehicle restrictions applied to parks and recreation areas (March 27, 2020)
- Increased security for Alberta renters (March 27, 2020)
- Legislature to reconvene to discuss legislation supporting Albertans (March 27, 2020)
- Tax relief for tourism industry (March 27, 2020)
- Alberta’s food supply system remains strong (March 26, 2020)
- Enforcing measures to stop spread of COVID-19 (March 25, 2020)
- Apply for emergency isolation support now (March 25, 2020)
- Supporting homeless Albertans affected by COVID-19 (March 23, 2020)
- Additional financial support for Albertans and employers (March 23, 2020)
- New COVID-19 physician billing codes added (March 23, 2020)