Health Minister Tyler Shandro in this undated photo. (File photo by THE CANADIAN PRESS)

Health Minister Tyler Shandro in this undated photo. (File photo by THE CANADIAN PRESS)

Alberta to send protective equipment, ventilators to B.C., Quebec, Ontario

Health Minister says Alberta has an abundance of equipment to deal with COVID-19

Alberta says it will be sending personal protective equipment and ventilators to provinces facing short supply, including B.C.

In an announcement Saturday (April 11), Health Minister Tyler Shandro said that the province has “more than enough to meet the projected demand for hospital services during the peak of the virus.”

Alberta has recorded roughly 1,500 confirmed cases of the novel coronavirus. Just shy of 50 per cent of those patients have recovered. Thirty-nine people have died.

Shandro said shipments of all kinds of personal protection equipment, also known as PPE, will be sent to Ontario, Quebec and B.C., including goggles, N95 masks, gowns and gloves.

Ventilators will also be sent.

Shandro said the province has signed $200 million in contracts with medical suppliers, allowing Alberta to “look beyond our border” to help fellow Canadians.

“This is the right thing to do,” he said. “Our government’s first priority will always be Albertans. Our team of health experts is very confident in our modelling data and expected need for PPE and ventilators.”

READ MORE: B.C. clears more acute hospital beds as COVID-19 case growth slows

Earlier this week, Alberta released its provincial modelling for best and worst-case scenarios due to the novel coronavirus, which shows that between 400 and 3,100 people could die from the virus. Those numbers were based on a transmission rate of between one and two new infections per every infected person.

Federal officials released models suggesting between 11,000 and 22,000 people could die.

B.C.’s provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry and her provincial counterparts have chosen not to model possible COVID-19 death tolls under the notion that “all models are wrong, but some are useful.”

“I don’t believe there’s value in some of the types of projections that have been presented,” Henry said during a news conference on Thursday (April 8).

“Our modelling is about what we need to prepare for. As you can see, deaths are not something that can be predicted. It depends on how your outbreak evolves.”

ALSO READ: A look at some of the B.C. inventors creating life-saving tools in fight against COVID-19

Instead, B.C. has focused modelling on whether the province has enough hospital beds and other resources if a widespread outbreak were to occur.

As of April 6, B.C. had 4,422 beds available, as well as 206 ICU beds. Since March, the province has been working to purchase more ventilators, bringing the total province-wide to 620.

But lack of PPE has been a concern voiced by various health care workers on the front lines of the COVID-19 battle. Health officials have expressed gathering this much-needed equipment isn’t an easy process.

Earlier this week, Health Minister Adrian Dix announced that the province has been able to source more PPE from Chinese vendors and suppliers, to the tune of 800,000 surgical masks, 157,000 isolation gowns, 85,000 gloves and 54,000 masks.

The federal government has provided an additional 900,000 surgical masks and 36,000 N95 masks.

Meanwhile, through donations the province has received 100,000 surgical masks, 83,000 N95 masks, 20,000 gloves, 10,000 goggles and 1,760 gowns.

“It’s not about quantity and speed of delivery—it’s about quality and safety, and that is what we’re doing,” Dix said.

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Coronavirus

Just Posted

Chilliwack potter Cathy Terepocki (left) and Indigenous enhancement teachers Val Tosoff (striped top) and Christine Seymour (fuchsia coat), along with students at Vedder middle school, look at some of the 500-plus pinch pots on Thursday, June 10 made by the kids to honour the 215 children found at Kamloops Indian Residential School. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress)
Chilliwack students make hundreds of tiny clay pots in honour of 215 Indigenous children

‘I think the healing process has begun,’ says teacher about Vedder middle school project

A program of the Fraser Valley Health Care Foundation enables patients to thank their health-care workers.
Fraser Valley program enables patients to say thanks to their health-care workers

Philip Harris Grateful Patient Program offered through health care foundation

Image by Free-Photos from Pixabay
Webinar looks at sexual abuse prevention among adolescents

Vancouver/Fraser Valley CoSA hosts free online session on June 15

Emergency services were on the scene of an apparent stabbing Friday afternoon (June 11) in the 2400 block of Countess Street in Abbotsford. (Photo: Kaytlin Harrison)
Two suspects arrested after apparent stabbing in Abbotsford

Incident occurs Friday afternoon in 2400 block of Countess Street

June is Brain Injury Awareness Month in Canada. (ADOBE STOCK IMAGE)
Shining a light on brain injury in Canada

June is Brain Injury Awareness Month

At an outdoor drive-in convocation ceremony, Mount Royal University bestows an honorary Doctor of Laws on Blackfoot Elder and residential school survivor Clarence Wolfleg in Calgary on Tuesday, June 8, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
‘You didn’t get the best of me’: Residential school survivor gets honorary doctorate

Clarence Wolfleg receives honorary doctorate from Mount Royal University, the highest honour the school gives out

“They will never be forgotten, every child matters,” says Sioux Valley Chief Jennifer Bone in a video statement June 1. (Screen grab)
104 ‘potential graves’ detected at site of former residential school in Manitoba

Sioux Valley Dakota Nation working to identify, repatriate students buried near former Brandon residential school

The Queen Victoria statue at the B.C. legislature was splattered with what looks like red paint on Friday. (Nicole Crescenzi/News Staff)
Queen Victoria statue at B.C. legislature vandalized Friday

Statue splattered with red paint by old growth forest proponents

Police cars are seen parked outside Vancouver Police Department headquarters on Saturday, January 9, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Vancouver police officer charged with assault during an arrest in 2019

The service has released no other details about the allegations

Denmark’s Christian Eriksen receives medical attention after collapsing during the Euro 2020 soccer championship group B match between Denmark and Finland at Parken stadium in Copenhagen, Saturday, June 12, 2021. (AP Photo/Martin Meissner, Pool)
Christian Eriksen in stable condition, Euro 2020 match resumes

Eriksen was given chest compressions after collapsing on the field during a European Championship

As stories of the horrors of residential schools circulate after the Tk’emlups te Secwepemc First Nation announced it had located what are believed to be the remains of 215 children, Grand Chief Stewart Phillip of the Union of B.C. Indian Chiefs said he feels a connection with the former students. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
2 sides of the same coin: Ex-foster kids identify with residential school survivors

Grand Chief Stewart Phillip says the child welfare system takes Indigenous children from their families

Nathan Watts, a member of the Tseshaht First Nation near Port Alberni, shares his story of substance use, a perspective he said isn’t seen enough. (Photo courtesy of Nathan Watts)
Public shaming, hate perpetuates further substance use: UVic researcher

Longtime addict Nathan Watts offers a user’s perspective on substance use

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Most Read