Alberta's Open for Summer Plan safely eases provincewide restrictions in 3 stages as vaccinations go up and hospitalizations go down. Alberta entered Stage 2 on June 10, and will enter Stage 3 on July 1.
COVID-19 resources are available in عربي, 中文, हिंदी, 한국어, فارسی, ਪੰਜਾਬੀ, Af-Soomaali, Español, Français, Tagalog, Tiếng Việt and اردو on alberta.ca/CovidTranslated.
Cases in Alberta
- 231,476 Total cases
- 57 Cases on June 21
- 227,413 Recovered cases
- 2,290 Deaths
- 1,773 Active cases*
- 200 In hospital
- 54 In intensive care**
- 4,648,134 Total tests completed
- 5,019 Tests on June 21
- 2,173,181 People tested
- 3,854,208 Vaccine doses as of June 21
Updated June 22. Numbers are current as of end-of-day June 21.
*Active cases include both community cases and hospitalizations. **ICU cases are a subset of those in hospital.
Help prevent the spread
All Albertans have a responsibility to help prevent the spread. Take steps to protect yourself and others:
- practice physical distancing
- wear a mask - they're mandatory in all indoor public spaces, workplaces and places of worship
- practice good hygiene: wash hands often for at least 20 seconds, use hand sanitizer, cover coughs and sneezes, and avoid touching face
- monitor for symptoms: cough, fever, shortness of breath, runny nose or sore throat
- isolate for the legally-required 10 days if you have any symptoms or 14 days if you're a close contact of someone with COVID-19
- take the COVID-19 self-assessmentto get tested
How it spreads
COVID-19 is transmitted though tiny droplets of liquid produced by people who have the virus. The virus spreads by:
- breathing in air that contains infected droplets from people coughing, sneezing, talking, laughing, and singing
- touching objects or surfaces the virus has landed on and then touching your eyes, nose or mouth (bath towels, kitchen utensils, door knobs, etc.)
People who have COVID-19 can spread it to others before they start to feel sick.
COVID-19 does not appear to transmit like measles through airborne transmission, but there may be circumstances that raise the risk of aerosol transmission. Individuals and businesses should apply mitigation strategies where these risks exist.
We think the virus generally only survives for a few hours on a surface or object, but it may be possible for it to survive several days under some conditions.
Variants of concern
Variants of concern spread more easily than the original COVID-19 strain, which could result in more severe illness, hospitalizations and deaths.
Alberta is monitoring for variants of concern. The B.1.1.7 variant is the dominant strain in our province.
Symptoms in variant cases are the same as the original virus, including cough, fever, shortness of breath, runny nose, and sore throat.
Monitor your symptoms
COVID-19 symptoms can be mild and are similar to influenza and other respiratory illnesses.
- Core symptoms: cough, fever (over 38°C), shortness of breath, runny nose or sore throat.
- Other symptoms: stuffy nose, painful swallowing, headache, chills, muscle or joint aches, feeling unwell in general, new fatigue or severe exhaustion, gastrointestinal symptoms (nausea, vomiting, diarrhea or unexplained loss of appetite), loss of sense of smell or taste, conjunctivitis (pink eye).
- Symptom of serious illness: difficulty breathing or pneumonia.
Get tested if sick or at risk
Isolate or quarantine if required
Isolation can help prevent the spread of COVID-19. Public health orders require you to:
- isolate for 10 days minimum if you have tested positive for COVID-19
- isolate for 10 days if you have any core symptom that is not related to a pre-existing illness or health condition: cough, fever, shortness of breath, runny nose* or sore throat*
- isolation period is for 10 days from the start of symptoms, or until symptoms resolve, whichever takes longer
- quarantine for 14 days if you are a close contact of a person with COVID-19, or returned to or entered Alberta from outside Canada, plus an additional 10 days from the onset of symptoms, should they occur
*Children under 18 are exempt from mandatory isolation for runny nose or sore throat but should stay home until well.
Assess your risk of severe illness
Most people – about 80% – recover from COVID-19 without needing special treatment. However, it can cause serious respiratory 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.
There is no proven treatment for COVID-19 at this time.
Supportive care is being used to treat patients with COVID-19 and some medications are being tested to see if they help severely ill patients.
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.
- COVID-19 does not have a specific treatment available.
- COVID-19 does not appear to transmit as efficiently as influenza:
- mainly people with symptoms seem to be spreading the disease, but asymptomatic transmission is possible and 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.
Critical Worker Benefit
The Critical Worker Benefit provides a one-time payment of $1,200 to eligible Albertans in recognition of their hard work providing care and critical services during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The application period for phase 2 is open to new categories of workers in the social services and private sectors.
Alberta Jobs Now program
Private and non-profit businesses can apply for funding to offset the cost of hiring and training unemployed or underemployed Albertans into new or vacant full-time jobs.
Employers can get up to:
- $25,000 for each new hire, or
- $37,500 for each new employee with a disability
Workers cannot apply for the program directly, but can let potential employers know they can apply for the Alberta Jobs Now program if they hire you.
Apply for the first of 3 intake periods by August 31.
Paid vaccination leave
All working Albertans can access 3 hours of paid, job-protected leave to get each dose of the vaccine.
Individuals and families
Financial support programs are available to help people experiencing unemployment and those who cannot work because they are sick, need to isolate, or are caring for someone in isolation.
Businesses and self-employed people can access supports to help with COVID-19-related challenges to:
- avoid layoffs, rehire employees and create new jobs
- access financial support, loans and credit
Small and Medium Enterprise Relaunch Grant
Eligible organizations impacted by the April 2021 public health orders can apply for an additional payment of the Small and Medium Enterprise Relaunch Grant.
T4As for Emergency Isolation Support payments
If you were a recipient of the Emergency Isolation Support between March 25 and April 6 2020, you will receive a T4A slip in the mail in February.
Introduced in spring 2020, the Emergency Isolation Support program ensured Albertans could continue taking care of themselves and their families while they had to self-isolate and had no income.
The temporary, one-time funding was intended to bridge the short period until Government of Canada supports became available.
When filing your 2020 personal tax return, you must report the amount you received as income under Line 13000 – Other Income using Box 200 - Provincial/Territorial COVID-19 financial assistance payments.
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.
- Help in Tough Times (AHS)
- Mental health and coping with COVID-19 (CDC)
- Talking with children about COVID-19 (CDC)
- COVID-19 information for young kids and students (PDF, 122 KB)
If you need to talk, call the 24-hour help lines:
Family and sexual violence
If you or someone you know is at risk of family or sexual violence, help is available.
- Call our 24-hour Family Violence Info Line at 310-1818 to get anonymous help in over 170 languages.
Chat live online with the Family Violence Info Line for support in English (8 am to 8 pm)
- Alberta’s One Line for Sexual Violence can provide assistance in finding sexual assault support services (9 am to 9 pm daily):
Child neglect and abuse
If you see prices skyrocket because of COVID-19, file a consumer complaint through our Report-a-Ripoff submission form or call 1-877-427-4088.
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. Buy with consideration and caution.
Cyber security incidents involving identity theft, fraud and malware are being reported across Alberta.
- If you receive a call asking for credit card information, hang up immediately and call the non-emergency line for local law enforcement.
- Be careful when clicking on links or providing personal information to people and organizations.
Info for organizations and vulnerable Albertans
Nearly one million Albertans act as caregivers for loved ones experiencing challenges related to illness, disability or aging. These caregivers need support too.
Charities and not-for-profit organizations
$30 million has been provided 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: Aug 12
Disability service providers
Disability service providers play an essential role in supporting people with disabilities during the COVID-19 pandemic.
For more information see COVID-19 information for disability service providers.
Pregnant people have a higher risk of severe illness from COVID-19 than for those who are not pregnant.
Infected pregnant people may also have a higher risk of adverse pregnancy outcomes, such as preterm birth, compared to those who are pregnant without COVID-19.
Because of this, pregnant people are encouraged to get the COVID-19 vaccine when it's available.
While there is limited evidence on how the COVID-19 vaccines may impact pregnant people, no adverse outcomes have been reported in clinical trials or in the vaccine roll out.
Homeless shelters and service providers
Shelters and temporary or transitional housing facilities provide an essential service in Alberta during this time.
- These facilities are exempt from the mass gathering public health order and may provide shelter to more than 50 people – as long as risk mitigation strategies are followed, including maintaining a minimum of 2 metres distance from one another.
- All non-essential gatherings inside these facilities must include no more than 50 people.
- For more information, read:
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: Aug 12
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.
- 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)
Public health actions
Alberta’s public health officials are carefully monitoring the situation in Canada and around the world. 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 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 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
- protecting Albertans in congregate care facilities by updating standards and guidelines
- making testing available to all Albertans with COVID-19 symptoms (cough, fever, shortness of breath, runny nose or sore throat)
Updated: April 15 at 11 am
COVID Care Teams
We are working with the cities of Calgary and Edmonton to access local agencies and organizations to provide on-the-ground support to communities experiencing a high number of cases of COVID-19, compared to other areas across the province.
Residents in these communities may face barriers that could contribute to increased rates of COVID-19 transmission:
- employment in public-facing, higher risk jobs – for example, front-line health care, maintenance, transportation
- live in higher density, multi-family or multi-generational homes
- are a newcomer to Alberta and may not have supports in place
- have English language barriers
- earn a lower than average income
To help address these barriers, COVID Care Teams will:
- distribute care packages with masks, sanitizers and translated resources
- refer people to 811 for additional information in multiple languages
- inform residents of the nearest COVID-19 assessment and testing centres
- connect people to transportation to COVID-19 testing facilities, if needed
- refer people to AHS for self-isolation options for people unable to safely do so at home
- provide information about financial supports for people who need to isolate
Upon referral by AHS, free hotel rooms and financial support are available to all Albertans who must isolate due to COVID-19 but cannot do so in their own homes. Call 211 for more information.
- Expanding COVID supports for all Albertans (February 1, 2021)
- Outreach will help Albertans connect to COVID-related resources (December 15, 2020)
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 directly.
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.
Regular updates from Dr. Deena Hinshaw, Alberta's chief medical officer of health.
Protecting families and the economy
Subscribe to updates about COVID-19 public health measures in Alberta.
- Update 233: COVID-19 pandemic in Alberta (June 22)
- Update 232: COVID-19 pandemic in Alberta (June 15)
- Update 231: COVID-19 pandemic in Alberta (June 10)
- Update 230: COVID-19 pandemic in Alberta (June 8)
- Update 229: COVID-19 pandemic in Alberta (June 3)
- Update 228: COVID-19 pandemic in Alberta (June 1)
- Update 227: COVID-19 pandemic in Alberta (May 27)
- Win Calgary Stampede prizes for getting vaccinated (June 21)
- All Albertans aged 12+ now eligible for second doses (June 18)
- Alberta hits 70% threshold, triggering full reopening on July 1 (June 18)
- Travel prizes added to Open for Summer Lottery (June 16)
- Open for Summer Lottery for first and second doses (June 14)
- Open for Summer Lottery for first doses (June 13)
- Ramping up vaccine second doses in Alberta (June 10)