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Alberta

Fast Action, And Fair So Far

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5 minute read

Fast Action, And Fair So Far

All over the world, one of the first political acts after coronavirus declared itself was to shut down all sports events. Now, with the same coronavirus persisting, and in some cases expanding, its dismal influence, many of the same elected individuals are rushing to open those events as widely and as often as possible.

It’s obvious that presidents, commissioners and other leaders in the athletic world are doing their best to keep up with this mad charge to activity that features millionaires on local, national and international television. The majority agrees it is neither wise nor important to wait for fans to fill the seats before starting or replacing seasons in all major-league sports.

North America’s four most-watched pro sports – soon to be recognized as five, including soccer — have already declared preferred, possible or potential starting dates: officials in every case are ensuring that large or small COVID-19 outbreaks could force further adjustments and, of course, ultimate elimination of their entire project.

At this moment, baseball is dealing with the sad fact that many teams are dealing with fierce emergencies. A lot of programs have been shut down and there have been stated suspicions that some facilities will not be suitable for the 30 home games designated in a stormy agreement finally set by players and owners last week.

Like everyone else, the Toronto Blue Jays have standard concerns about staff and players contracting the virus, but finding a place for home games may turn out to be more urgent. Permission has been granted to train in Toronto for the scheduled 60-game season but some cautious souls still suggest it is more likely that the young Jays will be required to nest this season in nearby Buffalo or distant Dunedin, Fla. American infection numbers indicate the problem of bringing players across the border into Canada could become politically and medically improbable by the scheduled July 22 season opener.

Here in Alberta, the saga of the Blue Jays, as well as the fascinating basketball Raptors who will be competing by the end of July, fades in a dull colour by comparison with the Calgary Flames and Edmonton Oilers who open their official training camps on Monday.

A Stanley Cup playoff run could extend to as many as 33 games for survivors in the best-of-seven final, which will be staged entirely at spectacular Rogers Place. Only because of Alberta’s relative success in tamping down the coronavirus did the NHL finally designate Edmonton as a “hub city” after making it obvious from the beginning of all this talk that Las Vegas and Toronto (the other hub) were the favoured communities.

Almost from Day 1 after the NHL declared it would somehow present the 2020 Stanley Cup to a legitimate playoff champion, commissioner Gary Bettman insisted that safety was the “biggest issue and most serious concern” for all. Granting that some insiders were less than thrilled at the decision to involve so many teams in a one-series-loss-and-you’re-out scenario, he still believes the proper move was to involve teams that had not been officially eliminated when the season wrapped up on March 16.

“The competitive balance in our league is so extraordinary,” he said, “that we had to make sure it was for all to get a chance to win.”

Admittedly, the plan took effect in a massive hurry. Now, there is league-wide concern that one of the eight outsiders admitted to the playoffs might somehow win the Cup and wind up with a high draft choice – perhaps Number One. If that case, weaker teams who lose out can be expected to yell: “Not fair.!”

A Small, Important Opening

 

Alberta

Alberta sees dip in COVID-19 cases over August long weekend: Hinshaw

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EDMONTON — Alberta’s chief medical officer of health says the dip in COVID-19 cases over the long weekend appears to show that people are following public health guidelines about physical distancing and wearing masks.

Dr. Deena Hinshaw says Alberta’s case numbers have been below 100 for four days straight.

She says the downward trend began Friday with 97 new cases, followed by 67 new cases reported Saturday, 74 on Sunday and 65 on Monday.

Bylaws requiring masks be worn in public places went into effect in both Edmonton and Calgary on Saturday.

Hinshaw also reported five new deaths, bringing Alberta’s total to 201 since the pandemic began.

She says three of the five deaths were at the Good Samaritan Southgate Care Centre in Edmonton, which has become the deadliest outbreak in the province.

The facility is reporting 24 deaths on its website on Tuesday. There have been 112 cases at the centre — 80 residents and 32 staff — since the outbreak began July 17.

Currently, there are 42 active cases among residents and 20 among staff members.

“This outbreak underlines the importance of our collective efforts to slow the spread of COVID-19 and to protect the most vulnerable members of our community,” Hinshaw said.

“Part of this protection requires continually evaluating our response efforts and using the best available evidence to update our approach when warranted.”

The most recent update reported 1,191 active cases in the province, down from the 1,386 cases reported before the long weekend.

Hinshaw said there were 85 people being treated in Alberta hospitals, 23 of them in intensive care.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Aug. 4, 2020

The Canadian Press


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Alberta

Consolidating EMS 911 dispatch services will save money, improve patient care: AHS

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EDMONTON — Alberta is consolidating all remaining municipally run emergency medical service dispatch call sites in a move that it says will save money and improve patient care.

The change will affect EMS 911 dispatch services in Calgary, Lethbridge, Red Deer and the Regional Municipality of Wood Buffalo.

Alberta Health Services has been running a dispatch system for the rest of the province since 2009.

It says the consolidation will allow the EMS system to send the nearest available ambulance to a patient regardless of geographic boundaries.

The government also says it will save more than $6 million per year.

Officials say the change that will take place over the next six months will not affect the local dispatch of municipal fire, police and medical first response services.

“The provincial EMS dispatch system allows for better co-ordination of all EMS resources, including ground ambulances, and air resources, and reliable response times,” Health Minister Tyler Shandro said in a release Tuesday.

Dr. Verna Yiu, AHS president and CEO, says consolidation is the right decision for any Albertan needing emergency medical care.

When the transition is complete, EMS calls will be handled by AHS EMS provincial communications centres in Peace River, Edmonton and Calgary.

She says callers to 911 will not notice any change.

Alberta Health Services says it plans to hire 25 new emergency communications officers and current municipal employees will be encouraged to apply.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Aug. 4, 2020

The Canadian Press

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august, 2020

fri07augAll Daymon17WALK TO BREATHE from Calgary to Edmonton(All Day)

thu27aug(aug 27)12:00 amsun30(aug 30)11:59 pmHUGE Garage Sale for Crime Prevention12:00 am - 11:59 pm (30) PIDHERNEY CURLING CENTRE, RED DEER, AB, 4725 43 St, Red Deer, AB T4N 6Z3 Event Organized By: The Central Alberta Crime Prevention Centre

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