COVID-19 outbreak involving variant declared at Edmonton's Cross Cancer Institute


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A COVID-19 outbreak involving at least one variant case has been declared at the Cross Cancer Institute in Edmonton.

Alberta Health Services spokesman Kerry Williamson confirmed the outbreak was declared on one unit at the institute on Monday. No information was available on the type of variant involved.

“Currently, three health-care workers associated with this outbreak have tested positive for COVID-19,” Williamson said in an emailed statement on Tuesday.

“In addition, one patient who was transferred to the facility last month also tested positive and is associated with this outbreak. Sadly, that patient died in late March.”

Williamson said site-wide asymptomatic COVID-19 testing will begin at the institute on Wednesday. All in-patients have been tested and no additional positive cases have been identified. The unit is currently closed to admissions.

“In addition, all health-care workers at the Cross will receive an invitation to be immunized, due to the fact that the outbreak includes a variant case,” he said.

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“We continue to base our immunization schedule on best evidence and the decisions of our public health experts.”

Under the province’s current vaccination rollout, some health-care workers aren’t eligible until Phase 2C which is expected in April and May.

Those eligible in this group include “anyone working in patient care facilities or providing services directly to clients in the community for Alberta Health Services, Covenant Health, Alberta Precision Labs, DynaLife, and students undertaking placement practicums in clinical areas.”

Williamson said no surgeries will be delayed because of the outbreak.