Alberta pushes back expected COVID-19 peak; tells Newfoundland to hold off on sending help

EDMONTON –

Alberta has told Newfoundland to stand down on an offer to send extra health-care workers because the west province doesn’t think it has hit the peak of the fourth wave yet. 

Newfoundland Premier Andrew Furey says he recently offered Alberta the same kind of help he offered Ontario in the spring. 

“He (Premier Jason Kenney) was supportive of that and open to it and we began organizing here on the ground in Newfoundland and Labrador,” Furey recalled during a press conference on Tuesday.

Then, Furey said Kenney told him to pause the plan to send health-care workers in early October. 

“Last week, Premier Kenney said that the situation had evolved to the point where their predictive modelling would suggest that they wouldn’t require our resources at this time,” Furey told media. 

Kenney’s acting press secretary confirmed he “conveyed to Premier Furey that peak pressure on Alberta’s health-care system was now more likely to be experienced in late October rather than late September as earlier projected.”

Modelling released at the beginning of September suggested Alberta would see its highest number of COVID-19 ICU admissions by the end of the month: 300 in the worst-case scenario, and less than 200 in the mid-level scenario.  

According to the latest data, Alberta has 265 COVID-19 patients in ICUs — the most ever. 

Furey said so long as Newfoundland’s own COVID-19 situation was under control, the province would be there to help Alberta. 

“The offer still stands.” 

Kenney’s press secretary, Harrison Fleming, told CTV News Edmonton Alberta was considering deploying any medical help received from the east to Fort McMurray. 

Newfoundland sent more than a dozen health-care workers to Toronto and Brampton in May.

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