Alberta reports 79 new COVID-19 cases, bringing total to 621

The province announced the largest single-day increase to date of confirmed COVID-19 cases on Saturday. 

Seventy-nine new cases in Alberta were reported in a government news release, bringing the provincial total to 621. Up to 54 of those are believed to be due to community spread.

The number of deaths attributed to the virus remains at two, which indicates no change since the previous update. 

As of Saturday, 41,691 Albertans have been tested for COVID-19. Fifty-three people have recovered from the disease.

New cases were identified in most zones. The case totals broken down by health zone are as follows:

  • 378 cases in the Calgary zone;
  • 139 cases in the Edmonton zone;
  • 48 cases in the Central zone;
  • 43 cases in the North zone;
  • 12 cases in the South zone, and;
  • One case is in a zone which is yet to be confirmed. 

The province has been giving near daily updates on the spread of the virus across the province since early March. While there are no local live streamed updates planned for this weekend, the government is providing an updated list of cases and other statistics. 

On Friday, Premier Jason Kenney announced new measures aimed at combating the spread of the virus.

Public gatherings are now restricted to 15 people or fewer and a wide range of non-essential businesses — from clothing stores to hair salons — were ordered to close.

The premier also promised rent protections. According to a Friday news release, tenants cannot be evicted for not paying rent or utilities before May 1 and a rent freeze is in place while the province remains in a state of public health emergency.

Starting April 1, fees for late rent will not be allowed for the next three months and landlords and tenants will be required to develop payment plans. 

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