Alberta Premier Tests Negative for COVID-19 but Will Isolate for a Week

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THE CANADIAN PRESS/Todd Korol

Alberta Premier Jason Kenney has tested negative for COVID-19 but will continue to isolate at home after one of his cabinet ministers tested positive.

Kenney says he was tested Wednesday afternoon because he attended events with Municipal Affairs Minister Tracy Allard last week.

“The results have come back negative,” he said in the statement late Wednesday. “I am feeling healthy, and am not exhibiting COVID-19 symptoms.”

Kenney said he will isolate until Oct. 29 and, in the meantime, work from home.

Allard went into self-isolation last weekend because a close contact tested positive, the premier’s office said.

She was notified Wednesday that she had tested positive for the virus, and Kenney immediately went into isolation and was tested.

“Minister Allard’s close contacts are currently being notified and will be advised to isolate and get tested,” said Harrison Fleming, a spokesman for Kenney.

“We are not currently aware of any close contacts of Minister Allard’s showing symptoms.”

Allard participated in a government announcement Monday via video conference and has not been in the legislature since the session began Tuesday, Fleming added.

Transportation Minister Ric McIver, as well as United Conservative Party MLAs Angela Pitt, Peter Guthrie and Nathan Neudorff are also entering self-isolation, as they had interactions with Allard last week. None are currently showing symptoms, Fleming said.

Dr. Deena Hinshaw, the province’s chief medical officer of health, was being consulted on the response, he said.

Hinshaw also announced Wednesday 406 new cases of COVID-19 — the province’s highest single-day tally since the pandemic began in March.

There were 3,372 active cases in Alberta and three new deaths. So far, 296 people in the province have died from the virus.

A total of 113 people were being treated in hospitals, 16 of which were in intensive care.

Kenney and federal Conservative Leader Erin O’Toole were criticized on social media over the weekend after they appeared side by side without masks during a livestreamed United Conservative Party general meeting.

O’Toole tested positive for the novel coronavirus last month and has since recovered.

The Alberta government has said all necessary precautions were taken for the event.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Oct. 21, 2020.

Daniela Germano, The Canadian Press

 
   

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