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Edmonton COVID-19 cases surpass Toronto

Last Updated Aug 20, 2020 at 11:20 am MDT

A shot of downtown Edmonton in February, 2018. (CREDIT: @davecournoyer, twitter)

EDMONTON (660 NEWS) – Alberta Health is trying to figure out how Edmonton has suddenly become the COVID-19 hotspot in the province.

The provincial capital currently has 571 infections, twice as many as Calgary and even Toronto.

The Ontario capital is currently sitting at 274 cases of the novel coronavirus.

For comparison, the City of Edmonton has an infection rate of 56 per 100,000 people while Toronto has 9.35 per 100,000.

But the higher rate could be linked to when the city moved into its relaunch plan compared to Toronto.

Edmonton allowed for larger gatherings back in June while Toronto reopened businesses in late July.

Chief Medical Officer of Health Dr. Deena Hinshaw said they’re currently working with city officials to determine what’s behind the recent rise in cases.

“We don’t have all the details about where they might have acquired the disease so I anticipate that more information will be coming in the next week or so as we complete those case investigations.”

Hinshaw added they are looking into several private gatherings to determine if they are behind the spike in cases.

“We do have one site where a faith-based group has had an outbreak. There have also been two distinct private gatherings, so private parties, one of which has 26 cases linked to it, another with 17.”

On Wednesday, Alberta reported 82 new COVID-19 cases and two more deaths.

The number of active cases across the province sits at 1,107.