LETHBRIDGE, AB – After several weeks of decline, the number of active COVID-19 cases in Lethbridge continues to rise.

A dozen people tested positive for the virus in the past day which (when recoveries are considered) pushed the number of active cases from 109 to 118.

There were 50 new cases in the South Zone of Alberta Health Services and 23 of them were in Cardston County.

Active cases in that municipality have risen from 49 to 66 over the last 24 hours.

There were also seven new cases in the MD of Pincher Creek.

Province-wide there were 875 new cases out of just under 16,000 tests for a provincial positivity rate of 5.3 percent.

Alberta’s Chief Medical Officer of Health says the number of hospitalizations and ICU admissions are still putting a significant strain on the health system.

There were 23 additional COVID-19 deaths reported to AHS in the past day.

Alberta Health Services has also declared a COVID-19 outbreak at Lethbridge’s Gilbert Paterson Middle School.

The Lethbridge School Division says there are currently three cases at that school and AHS is working to notify all close contacts that they must quarantine for two weeks.

An outbreak is declared in a school when there are two or more confirmed cases within 14 days or two or more cases that are epidemiologically linked.

Gilbert Paterson remains open but it must follow all AHS directions and protocols.

On the vaccination front, as of Jan. 12, there had been 58,144 doses of COVID-19 vaccine administered in Alberta.

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