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Ninety-one new cases of B.1.1.7 variant identified in Alberta

Last Updated Mar 19, 2021 at 6:31 am MDT

CALGARY (660 NEWS) — Alberta is recording 91 new cases of the B.1.1.7 variant, the highest single-day report of variant case numbers since it was first identified in the province.

Variant cases now make up 12 per cent of the province’s active cases of COVID-19.

The spike in variant cases comes as the province identifies 505 new cases of the virus, including one additional death.

WATCH: Dr. Deena Hinshaw provides an update on COVID-19 in Alberta

Dr. Deena Hinshaw sounded the alarm on case numbers in Lethbridge and how a recent spike in cases is concerning.

In less than one month, the southern Alberta city has seen a spike in active cases, with 469 people currently fighting the virus.

When it comes to Stage 3 re-opening plans, Alberta’s top doctor steered around any questions regarding any easing of restrictions and what kind of impact they could have on any progress the province has made thus far.

Dr. Hinshaw took a look overseas at other countries currently ahead of Canada in vaccinations and how some are experiencing a third wave of the virus.

She says what we are currently seeing out of Lethbridge is a reminder that spread can accelerate quickly if people don’t follow protocols.

Moving forward with vaccines, the province has now administered 418,000 doses and 92,378 Albertans are fully vaccinated with two shots of vaccine.

Starting Friday, the province will open vaccine bookings to the final age group eligible in Stage 2A.

That means, starting at 8 a.m., Albertans born in 1955 and 1956, and First Nations, Metis, and Inuit people born in 1970 and 1971 will be allowed to book.

Dr. Hinshaw reminded Albertans that if you are eligible for a vaccine, you stay eligible, even if you don’t book on the day your age group opens up.